FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Fort Lauderdale city leaders and residents celebrated the unveiling of the Progress Pride Flag Friday that is now along Sebastian Street and colored with meaning.
The newly colored crosswalk was unveiled just before the city’s Pride of the Americas parade that takes place on Saturday.
Local 10 News reporter Christian De La Rosa spoke to Fort Lauderdale resident Richie Batista, who said that the unveiling reminded him of what the city was like in the late 1960s.
“It takes me back through all the struggles,” he said. “I marched in the original stonewall in 1969 so this means a lot.”
The 18 by 75 feet Progress Pride Flag was displayed in an attempt to block the hate.
“This is our opportunity to expel the hate,” said Miik Martorell, President of Pride of the America’s. “It’s a place for you to feel welcomed--that’s what Pride is about.”
In its 46th year, the Pride of the America’s is the longest-running LGBTQ+ celebration in the state of Florida.
This new addition is now a permanent reminder of how far the movement has come.
“What it took us to get here there were a lot of hard-fought battles to get us to where we have something displayed on the street like this,” said Broward County Resident Barb Hendrix.
The pride parade will kick off at noon and will begin at Terramar Street and go down south through Las Olas Boulevard. The entire strip is expected to be surrounded by road closures.
The city will also be providing free shuttles going from Wilton Manors to Fort Lauderdale.
Event organizers also announced that Boy George will be performing a one-hour concert at the event.