Broadway losing the Pride Parade?

Late last night I rode up Broadway in a Shuttle Express van that was taking me home from Seatac. Traffic was backed up down the strip, Dick’s was packed with Friday-night revellers, and flocks of pedestrians staggered off to the bars for one more drink before last call. Fueled by jet lag loopiness, my boyfriend, myself, and our (obviously gay) driver got a good laugh out of imagining that the van was a float in the Pride Parade, carrying dancing van drivers dressed only in their uniform ties.

The boyfriend and I were out doing some grocery shopping this afternoon and we noticed a number of signboards on Broadway protesting against the plan to move the Pride Parade to the Seattle Center after this year’s march. When we got home, I googled and found an article about the proposal in Friday’s PI (“Gay Pride Parade plans to leave Broadway: Festival moving to Seattle Center next year”).

I can, to a certain extent, understand the parade organizers’ desire to mainstream the event by taking it to the Seattle Center, but it breaks my heart to think that it may abandon Broadway after this year. Moving the parade would be yet another blow to this struggling neighborhood (and it’s clear from the article that Broadway business owners are upset because losing the parade will mean a significant loss in revenue). But I can’t help but feel that the parade itself would lose some of its vitality and effervescence if it leaves Broadway behind. The Seattle Center is a generic festival space, without the historical ties and sense of place that Broadway provides. Maybe I’m being selfish, but I sure hope something can be done to convince the Seattle Pride Committee to keep the parade on Capitol Hill.

5 Comments so far

  1. Trace (unregistered) on June 20th, 2005 @ 11:41 am

    Moving the Pride Parade off the hill would be a crime….It would be like moving the Solstice Parade out of Fremont. The Pride Parade is part of the history of the Hill and Broadway, and as such should stay where it belongs….many people will no longer support the parade if it is taken away from us…

  2. Christina (unregistered) on June 21st, 2005 @ 11:57 am

    When San Francisco moved the pride parade from Castro to the Embarcadero, it cemented the idea that pride is a tourist activity. The only SF pride event that still seems genuine is the Dyke March (still in the Castro/Mission)


  3. josh (unregistered) on June 28th, 2005 @ 10:51 pm

    Ah, so that’s what the “keep Pride here” banners are about. I just got back to town and assumed that they were metaphorical — keeping the spirit of the festival alive all year, et c. — instead of practical.

  4. Broad (unregistered) on July 18th, 2005 @ 7:12 pm

    Um, I think if you look a little deeper you’ll see the Seattle Pride Committe for months now was trying to quietly slip the event to Seattle Center without the public knowing about the move. I’ve been reading the papers and they’ve already made an agreement with Seattle Center.

  5. theHawke (unregistered) on July 20th, 2005 @ 1:08 am

    Broad, allow me to correct your assumptions. BTW, I am not involved with the Pride committee in any way but I did go to the community meeting Sunday.

    As to your assertion that they tried to quietly slip it there, they held two meeting previous to the one this past sunday. They announced the meetings in the SGN. ONE person showed to the first meeting and a handful to the second. Then, the committee shelved any further discussion until after pride.

    They DID NOT make any agreement with Seattle Center. They merely applied for the permits, which were granted. Should the community wish to have it remain on Broadway and makes their case to SPC, they can just as easily apply for permits for Broadway/Volunteer park. NO agreement, repeat NO agreement or contract or anything else that would tie the march to Seattle Center has been made.

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