A crowd holds rainbow flags as they watch the 48th annual Chicago Pride Parade in 2017.
A crowd holds rainbow flags as they watch the 48th annual Chicago Pride Parade in 2017. (AP file)

Howard County will hold its first Pride festival at the end of June.

June was chosen as LGBT Pride Month across the nation as a way celebrate the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community on the anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, a series of riots widely recognized as the defining act of the LGBTQ liberation social movement.


The festival is co-hosted by Howard County government, which footed the bill of renting a space at Centennial Park, which usually costs $1,000, according to Jumel Howard, the festival’s planning committee chairman.

Organizers anticipate the budget will be between $10,000 and $15,000 with contributions from Hope Works, PFLAG Columbia Howard County and Emmanuel United Methodist Church of Laurel.

In homage to the Stonewall riots, county organizers have adopted the motto “Remember, Resist, Rejoice.”

Howard's LGBTQ groups planning first Pride parade, community outreach

Advocates, led by the county’s chapter of the LGBT group PFLAG, hope to see that work culminate on the Columbia lakefront next June in the county’s first pride festival. Set to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, the festival is scheduled for June 28.

“The motto is our way of saying that even though there's much to remember, we still have much to fight for,” said Howard, who is also the vice president of Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians & Gays Columbia Howard County, a hosting organization

“We should be grateful for what we have accomplished in the past few decades.”

The free event will take at Centennial Park in Ellicott City at 11 a.m. June 29.

Organizers are promoting this as a family event and will not have alcohol present.