Years ago, people weren’t always proud to show off support for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. Organizers of Sioux Falls Pride are happy that’s changed. They’re expecting a whopping ten-thousand people at Saturday’s event, and 90 businesses are lending their names to the cause. Organizers say this support means a lot to the LGBTQ community.
During past Pride events, Terrace Park is flush with people and decorate with every color you can imagine. There’s no pot of gold at the end of this rainbow. For members of the LGBTQ community, there’s something more valuable. More on that later. First, it’s important to note the event does not happen on its own.
“Let’s get ‘er done. Let’s set up,” Boots Parker, Sioux Falls Pride board member, said.
On Friday, board members were mapping things out at Terrace park to figure out where all of the business vendors and tents belong.
“We literally take this little wheel thing that measures out ten-foot spaces. So, we can mark where each tent goes,” Adam Jorgensen, Sioux Falls Pride president, said.
Once all the business vendors and food tents are set up, Saturday’s event is good to go. No matter how big it gets, Jorgensen and Parker say there’s a simple reason why Pride is important.
“I saw that camaraderie and people being comfortable in their own skin and I never saw that growing up from other LGBTQ people,” Jorgensen said.
“When I was 16 years old, nothing like this existed and I thought I was the only person who existed here,” Parker said.
For anyone who identifies as LGBTQ or anyone who feels like an outsider; there’s something more valuable at the end of this rainbow. Organizers say Sioux Falls Pride is a map that shows people they do indeed belong.
“This is proof not only that I’m not alone, but to anyone else that they are not alone,” Parker said.
“It kind of shows them to be fine with whoever you are,” Jorgensen said.