Naples Pride Drives On!

Every June cities across the United States celebrate Gay Pride Month. They do this to commemorate the first pride that started June 28, 1969, known commonly as the Stonewall Riots.

On Saturday, June 13, 2020, North Naples held their own socially distanced Pride celebration, via car! Attendees made their way through North Naples, down 5th Avenue and into downtown Naples. Each car or float was adorned with rainbows and Black Lives Matter paraphernalia. Naples Pride integrated parts of the Black Lives Matter protests into their celebrations.

With COVID-19 still threatening lives, board members amended the original Pride plans. People still came out waving signs that read “#LoveWins” and “Black Lives Matter”. Most donned masks and remained socially distanced throughout the car parade.

Naples Pride Car Parade, Photo by Michelle Pirre

Naples Pride board member Callahan Soldavini says both Pride and the Black Lives Matter are important to the community. Soldavini says participants seek, “Equality without fear of discrimination,” 

Tyler Renfro, another member of the board said, “I think it’s important … happening in the world our particular movement.” Tyler Renfro also wants everyone to remember Pride is a time for celebration. While the first Pride was part of a riot it has since been transformed into a celebration of equality and love. In the end, whether you are referring to Pride or Black Lives Matter, it’s a matter of rights. 

“Because it’s human rights… it’s human rights… we have a right to be here,” Tony Torres, a rally attendee, said.

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