IOWA CITY, Iowa (KWWL) – Typically Pride Fest is held in June in honor of the Stone Wall riots. However, when Iowa City had to postpone its events due to the pandemic, they chose October because of its importance to the LGBTQIA + community.
October 1979 was the march on Washington for lesbian and gay rights. At the University of Iowa, 1970 marked the first year a group of gay college students participated in Homecoming, ushering in the tradition of the Iowa City Pride Fest.
Fast forward to this point, Iowa City Pride always grows with its community. Instead of a parade, the organizers have opted this year for a march of unity, to show their solidarity with other marginalized groups, as well as with the broad spectrum to which they belong.
“There are a lot more people in the LGBTQIA + community who want to join us, so that unites everyone,” said Ashlyn Hall.
Their message remains the same for all these years.
“Obviously not all is equal, but it’s cool to see all the different ages here today, pushing together on the 50th,” said Nicole Brown.
Many travel from afar to come to the Iowa City Pride Fest, to reach communities they may not normally have access to.
“My town is a small town, so it’s cool to see everyone come together,” Brown said.
“The community of Iowa City has always been a particularly supportive place for people who are fully themselves,” said Kristine Munoz.
Colorful flags, hats, placards and even umbrellas burst in color on the streets of downtown Iowa City as they marched as allies and members of LGBTQIA +.
Providing a home and accepting those who need it most.
“You should be loved, even if you’re not straight. No matter who you love, we’ll always accept you,” Hall said.