35-40K expected at Wilton Manors Stonewall Pride parade

Wilton Drive was already packed with people Saturday evening ahead of the annual Wilton Manors Stonewall Pride parade, celebrating South Florida’s large LGBTQ population.

Wilton Manors itself is known nationally for having a high proportion of LGBTQ residents.

Organizers expected as many as 40,000 people in attendance to view the 7 p.m. parade.

Every year, according to the city, Wilton Manors gets an economic impact of more than a million dollars during Pride, but attendees said it’s about a lot more than bringing money to the area.

“It’s a very tough time for LGBT people in Florida, so you understand where we’re coming from, but today is about celebration and friendship and love and that’s what the gay community is all about,” attendee Antonio Cenceno said.

The celebration comes one year after a deadly crash marred the occasion in 2021.

One issue the city ran into this year was cost.

In light of recent mass shootings across the country and documented threats of violence against Pride events, officials said the event’s security bill is way up from roughly $50,000 to $92,000.

The street fair was set to run til 11 p.m. Saturday night.

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