Pride festival has joyous tone in 2013

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — This year’s Twin Cities Pride Festival was one of joy and celebration for gay rights advocates.

The festival, which culminated Sunday with a parade, celebrated a law that allows same-sex couples to get married in Minnesota. The first same-sex weddings will take place Aug. 1.

Organizers say last year’s parade felt like a rally, where gay marriage advocates carried signs urging others to “Vote No” for an amendment that would have banned same-sex marriages in the state.

But this year, there was more of a party atmosphere. The festival was complete with a “Save the Date Wedding Showcase,” where same-sex couples got wedding planning advice. There was also at least one marriage proposal.

Former Minnesota Viking Chris Kluwe was the parade’s grand marshal. He’s an outspoken advocate for gay rights.

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