HAGERSTOWN, M.d. (WDVM) — Downtown Hagerstown was filled with colors of the rainbow Saturday as people gathered for the city’s 8th annual Pride event. The music was turned up and people dressed to impress. Members of the LGBTQ community attended the event from across the tri-state area.
“This is my first time going to Pride so I wanted to express myself without feeling judged or anything,” attendee Timothy Murray said.
“I just came here to celebrate Pride and to celebrate ‘love is love’ and all of that,” Garretta Gleek said, who lives in Hagerstown. This years pride marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, where the seed was planted for gay pride celebrations and the fight for gay rights nationally.
Miss Maryland Chasity Vain was also in the crowd and said it’s an honor to be the queen of Hagerstown Pride. “Hagerstown, oddly enough, is very accepting, but yes, being Miss Maryland and being Miss Hagerstown Pride at the same time is a blessing,” said Vain. “Getting to represent your state and city at the same time is just amazing.”
Event goers say Pride is about more than just acceptance. “My first experience performing was at a Pride and that’s how I learned about myself. I came out as transgender at a Pride so I’m representing all the trans community here at Hagerstown pride,” Dylan Dickherson said.
Event coordinators say the message they wanted attendees to take away from the event is that quote “love grows.”