More than 100 people, from kids to seniors, took a spirited walk along California Avenue SW this afternoon during the third annual West Seattle Pride March. Its founders, married couple Monica Colgan and Autumn Lovewell, led the way after a short, emotional speech to the crowd:
Lovewell told the crowd, “We do this for our youth, first and foremost – they need our support, especially with what’s going on in our country” – a renewed attack on LGBTQIA+ rights. So the show of support matters more than ever.
Along the march route, from Morgan Junction Park north to California/Findlay, there were shows of allyship – from people standing along the sidewalk, to drivers honking their horns and cheering as they passed. One local church expressed its support by joining in the march.
A little whimsy along the way, too:
All this unfolded even as the city’s Pride Parade rolled through downtown, and amid the year’s hottest temperatures so far:
At the end of the route – the march segued into a celebration inside the air-conditioned event space that Lovwell and Colgan operate next to their businesses Youngstown Coffee Company and HeartBeet Organic Superfood Café:
The music supported the day’s theme – songs like Madonna‘s “Respect Yourself.” Lovewell and Colgan founded the local Pride March shortly after taking over Youngstown in June 2020, reminding everyone then, as they did again this year, that “the first Pride was a protest, not a parade.”