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Occu-Pride Territory

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Occu-Pride by

The Gainesville, FL, Pride Fest 2011 was joined by the city's Occupiers, blending into a peaceful and joyful gathering on Oct. 22.

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Before the Festival began, the 10th Annual Pride Parade started at at 1 p.m. at 7th Street and West University Avenue and proceeded down the Avenue to the Downtown Bo Diddley Community Plaza.

The Independent Florida Alligator reports, "Grand marshals Joy Revels, 51, owner of Dragonfly Graphics, and Aimee Anderson, 35, the company's marketing director and school liaison, led the parade down West University Avenue, promoting pride and their business for the first time.

"It's sort of a celebration of being free to be who you are in the world,' Revels said.

Revels and Anderson are partners not only in business but also in life.

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They said they have been to the festival before and have supported it by selling T-shirts used for the celebration.

"It's people pride,' Revels said. "Celebrating diversity is a huge concept.'

As grand marshals, the women were the first to see the Occupy Gainesville - or, as they renamed it for the day, Occu-Pride Gainesville - still protesting for the 99 percent in Bo Diddley Community Plaza.

"We [the LGBTQ community and Occupy Gainesville] are on the same team,' Anderson said.

"This Occupy "America' is revolutionary,' Revels said. "In 50 years, we could be celebrating the taking back of our country. I would walk in that.'

2011 Gainesville Pride T-shirt by

Clever signage included "Keep your money, give me change," and "Democrats value all families." Unlike in other Occupied Territories, the video photo of the police indicates that they were congenially providing their appropriate service to the community.

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LGBTQ festival, promotes pride in identity, self. The Independent Florida Alligator. Accessed Oct. 25, 2011.

The Pride Community Center of North Florida is an IRS 501(c)(3) charitable organization serving Alachua, Bradford, Clay, Columbia, Dixie, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Lafayette, Levy, Marion, Putnam, Suwannee and Union Counties. The Center provides an online Calendar of events for all of North Central Florida's GLBTQ organizations, Public Service Announcements, information on the Board of Directors for the Community Center, links to other resources and much more. The Center's newsletter, "Our Times", is the official publication of the PCCNCF and is usually published on a monthly basis including news stories of interest for the GLBT community and a calendar highlighting all of the events being held at the Pride Center in the coming month .


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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)

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