Monday, June 12, 2023

Cold Rain Did Not Dampen Woodstock Pride Fest Fun

Some of the Tree of Life Woodstock Pride Parade contingent before the rain intensified.  Bottom Row Sam. Ted Funn, Leah Mikkelson, Rev. Jen Gracen.  Top Row Judy Stettner, Jesse Bowen, Julie Huddle, Sandy Ekhert, Judy Beyer, Ron Relic, and Sam Madaus on the tractor. 

Well, it was cold—hovering around 50° —with  light rain or drizzle all day yesterday for the annual Woodstock Pride parade and event, but it did not discourage a large and enthusiastic crowd until the last hour.  Judy and Marc Stettner; Julie Huddle; Leah Mickkelson; Ryan, Wendle, and Blossom Broussard; Rev. Gracen, Virgina, and daughter Adie, Carol Ciccotosto, and the Old Man were among those who shivered and shared good news about the  Tree of Life Unitarian Universalist Congregation in McHenry at a booth on Cass Street.

Former Tree of Life President Carrie MacDonald and her child Ani who publicly defended teaching about LGBTQ+ issues at their Woodstock middle-school were honored as Parade Grand Marshals.  Rev. Gracen led a short service and blessing at the TOL tractor and hay wagon before the parade.  About 20 members rode or marched in the unit.  It was one of several parade entries by McHenry County Congregations.  TOL is note worth for being the first in the county to openly welcome and support the LGBTQ+ community back in the 1960s and publicly stand with the on many issues.  Many more members and friend also attended the Fest.

I didn’t get a chance to take any photos, but here are several pics I gangked from a number of Facebook posts.

Grand Marshals Ani (center back seat) and Carrie MacDonald.
Many familiar faces and dear friends marching with McHenry County NOW and Moms Demand Action on gun violence.

                        McHenry County Dems gather.

                      Two of Pride fest principal organizer--Missy Funk and Crystal Squires.

                        One of the four gate balloon arch entrances to Woodstock Square.

Some of the crowd enjoying the entertainment.

Julie Huddle and the Old man at the Tree of Life UU Congregation booth at Woodstock Pride, cold but indomitable. The sand art table on the left was a hit with kids, teens, and adults.


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