Thousands of Utahns gather for 33rd Pride Festival

Jun 4, 2023, 5:00 PM | Updated: Jun 5, 2023, 5:32 am

SALT LAKE CITY — Thousands of people gathered downtown Sunday morning in support of the LGBTQ+ community.

Utah hosts a lot of parades, but this one may be the state’s most colorful.

“We might be really red, but we’re really red, yellow, blue, ROYGIBIV, baby!” said Jenny Manwaring, who lives in Oakley, Utah.

Utahns of all ages showed up and showed out.

“I think there’s a lot more people here this year, it’s a party,” said Mia Montgomery, who was there with her mother and sister, from Sandy.

Some attendees and participants got around on strollers, others finished the route on skates. Several companies showed their support for Pride, along with recognizable characters, like Smokey Bear.

For many, it was time to be together with family. Maira Valdovinos watched the parade with her wife and nephews.

“I’m proud to have family out here to support me,” Valdovinos said.

Participants walk during the 2023 Utah Pride Parade in downtown Salt Lake City on June 4, 2023.

Participants walk during the 2023 Utah Pride Parade in downtown Salt Lake City on June 4, 2023. (Deseret News/Ryan Sun)

It’s a tradition for a lot of Utahns.

“We just go every year, we love to go and see the parade,” Montgomery said.

It’s a new event for others, like Manwaring’s son.

“I want him to learn early that this is what is normal, not keeping things quiet or secret,” she said.

Montgomery said it’s a celebration in the heart of Utah’s capital.

“It makes me feel good because all of the things that are happening throughout the nation, Utah is not falling to the funny business,” Manwaring said. “We are supporting love and we’re showing that we are Utah.”

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Thousands of Utahns gather for 33rd Pride Festival