The Utah Pride Center is gearing up for the Pride Festival and Parade this weekend. It has turned into one of Salt Lake City’s largest summer celebrations.
“It’ll have music, food, entertainment, a karaoke stage, a karaoke competition, you name it. That’ll all happen Saturday and Sunday,” says Bonnie O’Brien, a member of the parade steering committee.
She says they’re expecting as many as 30,000 people this weekend.
Pride Festival Director Valerie Walker says this year they’ve made a couple changes to make things easier.
“In the past, you could walk up to the gate and you could only hand us cash,” Walker says. “Well now we’re trying to move things along and we’re using new systems, so you can now purchase your tickets both online and at the gate with credit card and cash.”
One new addition to the parade this year is the Honor Guard from Hill Air Force Base. O’Brien says they’ll join Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski in leading the procession.
“We’ve had a lot of requests from the LGBT veterans, and we’re finally able to make that happen this year, which makes us all very, very proud,” she says. “It’ll give kind of a humbling moment to people in the community who are now honored by the group that they serve.”
The Pride Parade begins Sunday at 10 AM in front of the Salt Palace Convention Center. The festival is set up on Library Square and the grounds of the City and County Building. UTA has expanded TRAX and S-Line services for Sunday evening.
For a complete list of events and more information, visit utahpridefestival.org.