NC Pride sweeps through Durham


NC Pride was a huge hit this past weekend. According to reports, Saturday over 10,000 people showed up to line the parade route, listen to speakers on Duke’s East Campus, queue for the food trucks, eat, dance, celebrate and make merry.

We know Durham loves itself and we were stoked to see how much of Durham loves all of its citizenry.

We have a piece coming later in the week from our talented, young intern, Meriel O’Connell, and one of our amazing photogs, Melissa Key, was shooting the scenes in the streets, so we have a pile of pictures that will soon be available too.

In the meantime, perhaps the best way to understand and appreciate just how deep Durham’s Pride runs, how wonderful and accepting a weekend it was, is to list as many of the groups as we can that we saw out celebrating NC Pride at the Parade. If we missed you or your group, please email us and we will add you to the list. [clarioncontent at gmail dot com]


We represent!

We saw Duke student groups, UNC student groups, ECU student groups, NC State student groups, Appalachian State student groups, the Tar Heel Leather Club, Organic Transit, Aveda Institute, the Unity Center for Peace, Pilgrim and Umstead United Churches of Christ, Biogen, St. John’s Metropolitan Church, Cary Academy, Durham School of the Arts, Hillside High School, Durham Academy, Whole Foods, El Centro Hispano, TROSA, Fidelity, who’s banner read, “Our differences define us.”

We saw Councilmen Steve Schewel and State Senator Mike Woodard. The Durham Sheriff’s Department brought a boat. The Durham Fire Department was out in force. As were: Pinhook, Girls Rock, Alley 26, The Bar, the Sacred Sister’s of Insanity, 7 Star Cycles, Triangle Grrrls, the Bulltown Strutters (making beautiful noise), NC Green Plumbing, the Carolina Rollergirls, naturally they were on skates. The ACLU was out. The Ethical Humanists were there. St. Phillips Episcopal Church was there. Watts Street Baptist Church was representing. St. Luke’s too. Equality North Carolina marched. Social Workers United did too. So did Simpex. Time Warner Cable, no shit, had dancers, mimicking the Village People in khakis, work toolbelts, and white construction hats. (Wait in Durham, even Time Warner might be good guys?!?)

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There were live weddings being conducted during the parade. The Parade Marshall was Marcus Brandon, the lone openly gay member of the North Carolina General Assembly.

The crowd was young and old, white, black, brown, yellow, and more. It was boisterous scene where love for each other trumped all.


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Aaron Mandel

Aaron Mandel is a writer and an accomplished public speaker. He is the publisher of the Clarion Content. For more than a decade, the Clarion Content has covered Durham’s arts, politics, music, and cultural milieu. From breaking news stories to the hottest local acts, the Clarion Content is on the scene. The Clarion Content published more than twenty distinguished guest columnists and garnered nearly a million views. Mandel is a volunteer for the Durham Mighty Pen Literacy Project and serves as the President of the Board of Sustain-A-Bull Durham, a local small business collective with more than 200 members. He writes regularly on the Clarion Content and has been quietly writing fiction since the 4th grade. Mandel has been published in the Raleigh News and Observer. He has also produced numerous art shows, including, “Durham under Development”. He was a featured speaker at “The State of Publishing” conference. He has presented to Durham Chamber of Commerce, “Chamber U” on the “New Media”. He has also served as the play-by-play announcer for the D.B.L., a Durham youth basketball league. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Religious Studies from Indiana University in Bloomington. An avid policy debater at Indiana and a Nation Debate Tournament qualifier, Mandel was also a member of the New Jersey State Champion two-person Policy Debate Team. He has lived in North Carolina, New Jersey, California, Texas, Illinois, Colorado, Indiana, and Baja California, Mexico.

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