September 1, 2019 8:48 pm
Updated: September 1, 2019 9:38 pm

Thousands hit the streets for 2019 Calgary Pride Parade

WATCH: Thousands of people have taken part in Calgary's annual pride parade, but as Heather Yourex-West reports, not everyone was welcome.

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Tens of thousands of people made their way to 6 Avenue on Sunday to take part in Calgary’s Pride Parade.

The event kicked off at 11 a.m. with NDP MLA Janis Irwin joining the conversion therapy working group as parade marshals.

READ MORE: Alberta’s dismantled conversion therapy working group leading Calgary Pride Parade

“I’m here marching, not with the NDP but with the conversion therapy working group, who have shown that there are a number of survivors speaking up against the harmful practice of conversion therapy,” Irwin said.

The parade shut down a handful of streets across downtown, while trucks, buses, cars, floats and more filled roads with colourful balloons and streamers.

The event was a time for the community to show their support for the LGBTQ community.

“Just watching this community evolve and watching this parade become what it is today… It makes me feel really happy and I wanted to come show my support for it,” Elisa Daignault said.

READ MORE: Thousands come out to show their Pride at annual Calgary parade (2018)

While political parties as a whole were not allowed to march in the parade, individuals from those parties were allowed to march as long as they were allowed.

“We were so overwhelmed with applications for the parade this year that we didn’t have enough space for everyone,” said Shone Thistle, president of Calgary Pride. “So what we did was try to get creative to find other ways to embed our allies within the parade.”

READ MORE: Alberta political parties denied marching in Calgary Pride Parade

With the wrap up of the 2019 parade, Calgary Pride said it’s looking to next year, where they are going to continue to look for ways to expand the event further.

Officials are hoping they will be able to make the parade route even bigger, with an expected 90,000 to 100,000 onlookers next year.

WATCH: Downtown Calgary streets were filled Sunday as thousands marched in the annual Pride Parade. As Josh Ritchie reports, fog couldn’t hold back the city from showing support for the LGBTQ community.

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