F-M Pride Parade Sees “Biggest Turnout” Ever

Thousands of friends, families, and allies turn out for this year’s F-M Pride Parade.
Organizers say with over 500 participants in the parade itself, more people than ever showed up this year.

They’re celebrating years of progress, and years of love in downtown Fargo.

This parade wraps up F-M Pride Week, bringing communities together to spread a message.

Different colors splash downtown Fargo and flags wave as the fight for equality continues.
Families, businesses, and even dogs march in celebration.

And with the recent Supreme Court ruling, these two were able to get married last Saturday.
“We’ve signed so many things, trying to get it legalized, and now that it is, it’s amazing,” Landon Cider of Moorhead says.
“If my spouse were to die, if she’s not my legal spouse, then that’s a problem.
So it does mean a lot that it is actually legal,” Shari Smolindsley of Moorhead says.
They’re happy about the progress, with all eyes set on what’s to come in the future.
“We’re not gonna be going anywhere, and I think this will just keep getting bigger and bigger,” Jerry Erbstoesser of Fargo says.
“This isn’t the city that I grew up in, but it’s not the city it’s yet to become. There are so many changes yet to be made, but this is just the tip of the iceberg,” Monte Jones of Fargo says.

Organizers say this is the biggest turnout they’ve ever had.
“We’re super excited, the numbers are bigger than last year for participation, we’ve grown, the weather is gorgeous, so we couldn’t have asked for anything better,” FM Pride volunteer chair Christine Lindseth says.

BJ Armani of the Bad Weather Burlesque says it’s now more than just LGBTQ.
“We have LGBTQ plus now, it’s everybody, it doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from, we are just here to seriously celebrate family and community. That’s exactly what we’re all about,” Armani says.
Many businesses downtown and abroad are representing themselves at the parade to show support.
“Today is the celebration of how far we’ve come, celebrating awareness and outreach efforts for both our team members and the community here in Fargo-Moorhead,” Wells Fargo supervisor Kevin Widerstrand says.
They’re saying it’s not just about the parade, it’s about the visibility and belonging to a community.

The week may be over, but organizers say they won’t stop efforts to make the F-M area a community which embraces diversity.

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