Beautiful People

person holding multi colored heart shaped ornament
Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on

For me, if the Pride Weekend had a motto it would be Beautiful People. Above all else, that is what made it so very special, like a slice of heaven on earth.  

I had considered trying to share everything I did at Pride, but that was a lot, and I think the message would get lost in the details.  So instead I am going to share the things that touched my heart and made my first Pride, out as the true me, an exceptionally special one.  

Pride started Friday night as I walked to the capital to join the rally & march. Along the way, I saw a number of others headed to the capital or just relaxing at home as they clearly celebrated Pride in their own way. I wished all of them a Happy Pride and got smiles and responses back. The joy in their voices and faces was so beautiful.

When I got to the capital I just wandered around enjoying all of the beauty. Then I found my spot, a pedestal next to one of the sets of stairs. The music had started and this was, to me, a great place to dance. I had a great view of everything; the podium where the speeches would be, the lawn where so many beautiful people were relaxing, the grand stairs heading up to the capital that were still filling with more and more people. So I danced to the music as I enjoyed the sights.

Somehow after the speeches I ended up being one of the dozens of people who helped carry the Pride Centers’ huge Pride Flag. I never mind helping and it kind of felt like an honor to get to help carry it. The march started, but we didn’t. After a bit, it became obvious that we were to be the last group moving.

Finally, we started moving, but to the side instead of forward. There was a need to get us and the flag in the right spot before moving. There was some confusion about where we were supposed to be moving. We all moved to the left but then had to move a bit to the right. You know like getting that big couch in just the right spot. But after a little back and forth, we got the flag in the right spot and were moving down the steps.

It was so exhilarating. I felt so blessed to be part of it. We marched down the street in unity of heart. As we marched cars would honk to cheer us on and we would scream back cheers. It was one of those amazing moments where you feel if everyone could just experience this, we could end all wars and solve the world’s problems because we would all be focused on love.

Next on my list was the midtown block party, which I walked to. As I got closer I could hear the music and crowd. The line to get in was huge. It was nearly a city block long. My friends and I got in line and chatted as we waited. It took a while but it was well worth the wait.

The stage was huge and the dance area was packed, just the way I like it. What made it very special was that my favorite DJ, DJ Naomi, was DJing that night. The love in the crowd, the joy in the dancing, the beauty of it all was just overwelming at times. I was there until 1am dancing and occationally taking breaks to chat with friends. I walked back to my hotel with my little gay heart so very full and happy.

The next day it was time to check out the Pride Festival. There were so many venders and fun things to see, eat and check out. But again the thing I enjoyed the most was the people. Everyone expressing their individuality. Everyone saying Happy Pride in their own way. Everyone with such joy on their faces and in their hearts. As I wandered through the booths, I commonly stopped to comment on someone’s beautiful presentation or chat about some queer topic. It was so wonderful being in a place full of love and acceptance.

That night I got a very special treat. I am good friends with the people at Club Verse, and they allowed me to dance on their big stage for a bit before the next act. That was amazing and definitely one of the biggest highlights of the weekend. I still don’t entirely understand why I so like being on the stage. Most any bar or club I go to if they have an empty stage I am on it. But I have never been on a stage this big with this many people. It was fantastic. Dancing and abosorbing all of the joy in the crowd, with the beautiful Wasatch mountains in the background was such an amazing experience.

The next day was the Pride Parade of which I missed a lot of it. Unfortunately after being up very late dancing two days in a row, my body was saying it was time for a break. I ended up sleeping in that morning. But the time I got the the parade route it was mostly over. But what I did see was great!.

Then I got an unexpected treat. Since getting to SLC I hadn’t had any good coffee and by then that was becoming a need. Remember I am a former Seattleight, we take our coffee very seriously. So as the parade ended I got out my phone to look up a coffee places near by. To my suprise one option was Encircle Cafe. I had no idea Encircle had a cafe. Get coffee and support a great cause, wow!

So I headed to Encircle Cafe hoping they were open and had good coffee. I had never been there before so I had no idea what to expect. The place is wonderful, bright and welcoming. So I orded some coffee and wanted to see how it would be, it was great!. So yes great coffee that supports a great cause. In fact it was so good that I stopped by there again on my way home the next day.

My first out Pride was all I hoped for and more. I chatted with so many peoaple, my social butterfly wings enjoyed soaring. I met up with friends and met new friends and just love it all. I don’t know how many times I cried because I was so overwelmed by the love and joy of it all. Such beautiful people, such a wonderful experience. I feel so very blessed.