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Pride celebrations are underway across the nation and in Palm Springs

The month’s long celebration of Pride officially kicked off this weekend.  

Folks are celebrating across the nation and here in the Coachella Valley. 

"You know it's pride in Palm Springs 365 days of the year," said Greater Palm Springs Pride President, Ron deHarte.

Major cities across the country getting into the Pride spirit and hosting their own celebration. 

The city of Palm Springs hosts its annual celebration during the month of November. 

"There's nothing like Pride here," said Palm Springs Resident, Douglas Herrema. "This is the best place for Pride in the country. Always has been and will always will be."

Greater Palm Springs pride rolled out ‘The Big Gay Barbecue' last year during the month of June.

"We have huge crowds 200,000 plus people over the long weekend, what we saw last year with 'the Big Gay Barbecue', it's our local community that came out."

Palm Springs residents like Darvey Franco and Jody Moon appreciate the communal feel of Palm Springs Pride celebrations 

"Well it's definitely a lot smaller scale, but the beauty of it is it's really not as commercialized. It's really more about the community more than the sponsors. I feel you get to feel the spirit of the Pride," said Franco.

"I've lived in many larger cities and sometimes you get lost in the shuffle, but here I think you always run into the same people and there's a sense of community and a sense of family," added Moon.

Even folks from L.A. recognizing the charm of celebrating pride in Palm Springs

"It's nostalgia that I think is unrivaled, a culture that really gets to be enjoyed here in Palm Springs," said Benjamin Pullis, who was visiting Palm Springs from Los Angeles.

Although the summer heat makes it difficult to fully celebrate Pride in the Coachella Valley, greater Palm Springs Pride is working on solutions.

"You know, the pride organization has been putting together events in the Arenas District for 13 years. And we just started looking at last year, what else can we do in the month of June, maybe as the sun comes down behind the mountain, and it does get cooler here in the desert. You know, there's nighttime events that we can put on, and that's what we tested last year with 'The Big Gay Barbecue.'"

Though much progress has been made, deHarte says Coachella Valley residents can continue to advocate for LGBTQ rights across the nation. 

"We need our community to come out. Stand up, raise awareness and continue to fight those anti-LGBTQ discrimination bills that are coming forward," added deHarte.

The 'Big Gay Barbecue' will be taking place next weekend at the Arenas District.  

You can find more details HERE.

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Bianca Ventura

Bianca Ventura joined KESQ News Channel 3 as a reporter in February 2022.


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