18 Key Facts About Gay Pride


More than 8 million adults in the US are lesbian, gay, or bisexual, comprising 3.5% of the adult population.
9 million Americansroughly the population of New Jersey identify as LGBT.

LGBT Pride Month

The month of June in USA was chosen for LGBT Pride Month to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which occurred at the end of June 1969.

The Stonewall Riots

The Stonewall riots were a series of violent demonstrations by members of the gay community against a police raid that took place in June 28, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn, in the neighborhood of New York City. This event leading to the modern fight for gay and lesbian rights in the United States

The First Flag

The rainbow flag as a gay pride symbol made its debut at the San Francisco Pride Parade in 1978. Harvey Milk asked his good friend Gilbert Baker to design a unifying symbol for the gay community and the rainbow flag was the result.

Harvey Milk

Harvey Milk was an American politician who became the first openly gay person to be elected to public office in California.

Symbolic Colors

The original LGBT-flag was hand-dyed and consisted of eight symbolic colors:

Dropping Stripes

The original rainbow flag had eight colors. Later hot pink and turquoise were taken out later due to production constraints and the need for design symmetry.


The Greek Lambda symbol was another commonly used Gay Rights symbol prior to the Rainbow Flag, and was the sign of the Gay Activist Aliance.

Lambda signify liberation, unity, synergy, or the iconic scales of justice.

Giant Flag

In 1994, Gilbert Baker led the creation of a mile-long Rainbow Flag, to honor the 25th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized it as the world's largest flag.

The First Gay Pride

The first Gay Pride parades were held the weekend of June 27 and 28, 1970 in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. They were organized to commemorate the first anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.

Oldest LGBT Organization

The oldest surviving LGBT organization in the world is Netherland's Center for Culture and Leisure (COC), which was founded in 1946, and used a 'cover name' to mask its taboo purpose.

The Rise of "Pride"

Early marches commonly used 'Gay Liberation' and 'Freedom' in their names. Then, with cultural changes and decreased militancy in the 1980s and 1990s, these words became less frequent, and the term 'Gay Pride' became commonly used.

The world's largest parade

With an estimated 3.5 million attendees in 2011, Sao Paulo, Brazil, hosts the world's largest Pride parade.


Europe has a pan-European international Pride event, called appropriately Europride.

Floats on a river

Amsterdam is the only city whose Pride celebration literally floats on a river. The parade takes place on 100 decorated boats that sail through the city on the Prinsengracht River.

The longest gay pride celebration

The longest gay pride celebration lasts three to four weeks in Sydney, Australia each February, ending with Mardi Gras.


  1. Gary J. Gates. April 2011. How Many People are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender? The Williams Institute.
  2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gay_pride
  3. http://www.huffingtonpost.com
  4. http://www.edgeboston.com
  5. Photo by Andy Newman (fla-keys.com)
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