Love. Acceptance. Support. Joy.
Those were just some of the adjectives used to describe the 2nd Annual Little Falls PRIDE event that took place Saturday, June 11, 2022, in Little Falls, NY. Rainbow decorations covered Burke Park, and people lined the sidewalks draped in PRIDE flags of different colors.
The weekend kicked off Friday night with a standing-room-only drag show and the Little Falls Elks Lodge that featured several talented queens, each putting on unique and crowd-pleasing performances. The entire room came alive with laughter. A major highlight was the lip-sync competition with crowd volunteers, where no one held back on their sweet dance moves.
Saturday morning began with the PRIDE Stride 5K through the streets of Little Falls, with participants donned in their most colorful PRIDE attire. The Kids Run followed shortly after, and the large crowd cheered the young runners on to the finish line. Runners received medals for categories such as first place in age group and best dressed.
After the races, the park itself came alive with people of all ages coming together to celebrate love and acceptance. Mayor Mark Blask welcomed the crowd to Little Falls and stated that everyone was always welcome there. Other speakers included Ron Zacchi, Gov. Kathy Hochul’s director of LGBTQ+ Affairs, and Dr. Mark Montgomery, the chief diversity officer at SUNY Poly. Co-chairs Erynn Lowery and Laura Powers addressed the attendees and thanked all the volunteers that made the event possible.
Drag performances were a crowd favorite throughout the day, as the queens made their way through the park, interacting with people of all ages. Some queens also participated in Drag Story Hour, reading books to children at the event in a special tent set aside just for that.
Local vendors were present, selling crafts, plants, and PRIDE merchandise. There were also food vendors that offered a delicious variety of gyros, grilled cheese, tacos, and smoothies.
Agencies such as the YWCA, Excellus, Connected Community Schools, Staffworks, and more were present with information on healthcare, mental health resources, and employment resources. Connected Community Schools also provided games and activities, such as bowling and Connect Four, for kids in the middle of the park.
The weekend ended with the PRIDE Prom Saturday night at the Little Falls Youth and Family Center. Attendees came dressed in their best and danced the night away while enjoying photo opportunities and refreshments. Prom royalty was even crowned! The highlight of the night was the dance circle, where the crowd came together to give everyone a chance to showcase their skills. Those who were still ready to party headed to the PRIDE After Party at The Renaissance.
Little Falls PRIDE is hosted by Little Falls Community Outreach and the Rainbow Club. The Rainbow Club provides a safe space for LGBTQIA+ students and allies in grades 8-12 to discuss issues & receive support. For more information, please visit https://lfcommunityoutreach.com/rainbow-club.