The city of Aurora was approved to host its very first Pride Parade Tuesday.
An activist group known as Indivisible Aurora, had been trying to make this happen since last November. After the tragedy that was the shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, one of its members decided to submit an application for a permit.
“There’s so much in the way of the LGBT community in Aurora and the western suburbs that it'll be nice to have something you don't have to go nearly as far to take part in,” said Gwyn Ciesla, a board member of the group.
Gary McCann is a reverend at New England Congregational Church and said he is a supporter of the proposed parade.
“We should have been doing it a long time ago,” McCann said. “Aurora is the second largest city in the state outside of Chicago.”
McCann however, does not deny that there is no opposition from clergy members in the community.
“The opposition is prejudice,” he said. “Rather than having any real legitimate reason to oppose the parade.”
Reverend Dan Haas has voiced his concerns about the Pride event being held in the city and said he would like to see more transparency from Indivisible Aurora.
“The issue is, ‘are you giving us the information?’ ‘Are you prepared?’ ‘Have you planned for the parade?’” Haas expressed. “And that's what seems to be not very forthcoming.”
Three government operations committee members—Aurora Aldermen—approved the request and set the date for the inauguration to be on Father’s Day, June 17 at 1 p.m.
“It is not only the right thing to do, it is also the right of the organizers to stage the parade,” said the mayor in a statement.
Indivisible Aurora said up to 60 vendors would be allowed to participate in the parade route, which would run less than a mile through downtown Aurora.
“There’s nothing to be afraid of. We want it to be a really family-friendly event,” Ciesla said. “We want our kids to come.”