Dozens of rainbow-flag-waving Bushwick residents paraded down Knickerbocker Avenue on Saturday for the 10th annual Bushwick Pride festival.
This year’s celebration took place in the wake of a violent attack on a gay man in nearby Crown Heights earlier this month, and attendees said the event was more important than ever, as it gave lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in the neighborhood an opportunity to speak out and get to know their neighbors.
South Street Seaport
“I think it’s a great way to build bridges and find common ground in the community,” said transgender activist Dee Perez, a who marched with Assemblywoman Maritza Davila (D–Bushwick). “It’s a way to say, ‘we’re here.’ ”
Perez, a Bushwick native, said she felt safe strolling the streets despite the attack.
“As a transgender woman, I feel safe in my neighborhood and I’m proud to live in Bushwick,” she said.
Latino immigrant and worker advocacy group Make The Road New York organized the event, and capped off this year’s carnival with a blow-out block party outside its office on Grove Street, where revelers partied to live music, poetry, and drag performances.
One attendee said he would have liked to have seen more promotion for the event at local schools, but the 75-odd people who did show up brought plenty of enthusiasm to go around.
“It was a really great event, really colorful,” said Raymond Ayala, a student at Boricua College in Williamsburg. “We had a nice, loud crowd.”
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