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Pittsburgh pride parade celebrates community's diversity

| Sunday, June 11, 2017, 3:15 p.m.
Pittsburgh is one of many cities around the world that host Pride parades and festivals. Here, participants line up to march in Pittsburgh's 2017 Pride parade.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Pittsburgh is one of many cities around the world that host Pride parades and festivals. Here, participants line up to march in Pittsburgh's 2017 Pride parade.
Anthony DeLuca of Cranberry walks down Fifth Avenue during the 2017 Pittsburgh Pride parade.
Tribune-Review
Anthony DeLuca of Cranberry walks down Fifth Avenue during the 2017 Pittsburgh Pride parade.
Rebecca Lopez, of Lawrence PA gets ready outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Rebecca Lopez, of Lawrence PA gets ready outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Members of the 84 Lumber float get ready outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Members of the 84 Lumber float get ready outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Phil Caye 31, of Shaler poses for a picture on Sixth Avenue during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Phil Caye 31, of Shaler poses for a picture on Sixth Avenue during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Orgainizers say Pittsburgh Pride is the largest regional community festival that celebrates diversity, and specifically the LGBT community and its allies. Jessica Straley of Beaver Falls is shown here walking down Fifth Avenue during the 2017 Pittsburgh Pride Parade.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Orgainizers say Pittsburgh Pride is the largest regional community festival that celebrates diversity, and specifically the LGBT community and its allies. Jessica Straley of Beaver Falls is shown here walking down Fifth Avenue during the 2017 Pittsburgh Pride Parade.
Khianti Childs of Carnegie cheers while walking down Sixth Avenue during the 2017 Pittsburgh Pride parade.
Tribune-Review
Khianti Childs of Carnegie cheers while walking down Sixth Avenue during the 2017 Pittsburgh Pride parade.
Participants in Pittsburgh's Pride Parade line up outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of the parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Participants in Pittsburgh's Pride Parade line up outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of the parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
A participant in Pittsburgh's Pride Parade is framed by balloons  outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of the parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
A participant in Pittsburgh's Pride Parade is framed by balloons outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of the parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
People pack together on Liberty Avenue during Pridefest, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
People pack together on Liberty Avenue during Pridefest, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Josh Koshar, 32 Lawrenceville walks down Fifth Avenue during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Josh Koshar, 32 Lawrenceville walks down Fifth Avenue during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Maddy Dalberny 13, of Carrick (left) and Kailee Waite, 13, of Mt. Oliver rest after performing with the Pittsburg Pride Color Guard during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Maddy Dalberny 13, of Carrick (left) and Kailee Waite, 13, of Mt. Oliver rest after performing with the Pittsburg Pride Color Guard during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Kierra Harrison 16, of Brighton Heights, dances outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Kierra Harrison 16, of Brighton Heights, dances outside PPG Paints Arena before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Scarlet Fairweather, 27, of Irwin helps Miss V, 22, of Pittsburgh with her hair before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Scarlet Fairweather, 27, of Irwin helps Miss V, 22, of Pittsburgh with her hair before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Lady Porcelain, 22, of Pittsburgh primps before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Lady Porcelain, 22, of Pittsburgh primps before the start of Pittsburgh's Pride Parade in Uptown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Hector Arocha of Shadyside leads the Pittsburg Pride Color Guard in a performance on Liberty Avenue during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review
Hector Arocha of Shadyside leads the Pittsburg Pride Color Guard in a performance on Liberty Avenue during Pittsburgh's Pride Parade, downtown, Sunday, June 11, 2017.

Rainbow streamers clung to traffic lights, free-spirited dancers shashayed across blocked-off streets and gutsy festival goers whizzed by skyscrapers on a zip line Sunday afternoon as LGBT rights supporters filled Downtown Pittsburgh.

The city's annual PrideFest and related EQT Equality March drew tens of thousands of celebrants, with people of all ages and backgrounds decked out in colorful clothing and carrying signs promoting unity and equal treatment for everyone, no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Sunday marked the tenth and final day of this year's Pride events organized by the Delta Foundation of Pittsburgh , which aims to improve the quality of life for the LGBT community. Officials anticipated more than 130,000 attendees over the 10-day schedule.

Pittsburgh's first Pride march was held on June 17, 1973.

"Pittsburgh always represents," said Jacqueline Allan, 55, of Swissvale, who donned a set of wings made of rainbow-colored balloons. "This city is beautiful, it's open, inclusive. And I feel that it's very important to continue that tradition."

The Rise Up For Our Rights Rally started at noon at PPG Paints Arena, prior to the EQT Equality March.

The march began around 12:30 p.m. from PPG Paints Arena and continued toward Grant Street. More than 100 groups of people walked the route or paraded by spectators in floats, including nonprofit partners, corporate sponsors, law enforcement, first-responders, recreational clubs and representatives from Pittsburgh Public Schools.

The parade concluded shortly after 2 p.m. at Liberty Avenue, which was closed to traffic between Sixth and Tenth streets. The party continued with PrideFest, featuring live performances, a 300-foot-long zip line and dozens of LGBT-friendly informational booths and activity stations.

"There's such a huge air of acceptance here that people can just be themselves and be honest about who they are," said Jennifer Sikora, 44, of Franklin Park, associate area director for the Western Pennsylvania chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

"We have very honest conversations at our tent with people because they're comfortable," Sikora continued. "This is a safe venue from them to open up about anything, including their challenges with mental health."

Among the most popular PrideFest swag: red and blue T-shirts with a message written in U.S. Constitution-style script — "We the People means everyone."

Dozens of U.S. cities hosted similar events around the country, from the ResistMarch in Los Angeles to the Equality March in Washington .

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