Feel the Homomentum!

Pride and joy on display at Peoria's first gay festival:
Diversity and acceptance were key as hundreds of children, adults and families flocked to the Peoria Riverfront on Sunday afternoon for the first Peoria [IL] Pride Festival.

The festival was a six-hour gay pride event, featuring music, speakers, food and information booths, as well as children's activities.

Kim Roe, 43, of Peoria brought her 3-year-old son, Jackson, to the festival in order to help him learn about acceptance and diversity.

"I'm not gay, but I went to (a similar festival) in Chicago, and I think it is so important to celebrate diversity," she said, adding, "People need to understand, there is more than one way to love somebody."

Peoria Pride was organized by local volunteers who created a not-for-profit organization called Central Illinois Alliance for Diversity and Equality (CIADE), said Dave Barker, festival organizer and alliance president.

"CIADE's goal is to unite the established LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) organizations and community in order to speak with a common voice in central Illinois about LGBT issues and needs. This Pride event today is the first step," Barker wrote in a forward to the event's program.

Barker said he was pleased with the 37 vendors and hundreds of people who showed up to support the festival and enjoy the experience.

"It's about our community being proud of who we are and coming out to support each other and have a great time," he said.
When I first saw this story, the first thing that popped into my head was "Pride plays in Peoria!" and it gave me a mad case of the joyblubs.

[Via Andy.]

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