Preparations underway for Rhode Island Pride

By: Chloe Leshner


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — A record number of people are expected to attend the Rhode Island Pride Celebration tomorrow. The theme this year is louder and prouder and organizers say it’s a call to action to keep fighting for equality.

Event organizers says the city of Providence and the state have been extremely supportive of the LGBTQIA community, but that the fight is far from over and tomorrow is both a celebration and way to come together to work for change.

The colors of the rainbow fly over Providence, preparations underway for the 43rd annual Rhode Island Pride Celebration.

"We’re standing up and fighting for the issues that are important to our community but we’re also celebrating who we are and the queer history that we all represent," says Joe Lazzerini, the president of Rhode Island Pride.

Equipment for musicians and entertainers is rolled to the area where the stage will be and dozens of volunteers help set up tables for the 200 vendors and businesses that will take over South Water Street Saturday, huge crowds expected for the celebration.

"To be recognized by the community, to be recognized by the state and the city, I think is really important. I hope the message we send tomorrow is it’s okay to be louder and prouder about who you are," says Lazzerini.

That’s this years theme, a call to action to keep working toward equality.

"There’s still a lot to do in terms of trans rights and that is something that we certainly build awareness around with our events and there will be organizations here that will help educate the community on those needs," says Alex Gorriaran, an event producer.

"There are still voices that need to be listened to, there’s still people who need to be fought for and until everyone in our community can walk down the street and not be killed, that’s something we need to fight for," says Lazzerini.

PrideFest on South Water Street runs from noon to 7 and the illuminated night parade starts at 8.

(C) WLNE/ABC 6 2018