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Chicago Pride Guard Will Flashback For a Rad Time at Chicago Pride Parade

It will be a flashback for the Chicago Pride Guard at this year’s Chicago Pride Parade, set to start at 11 a.m. on Sunday, June, wrapping up the city’s 2024 Pride Month.

Look for the neon green flags, adorned to hot pink. Chicago Pride Guard, with at least 35 set to march with the group in this year’s parade, will be in spandex, with headbands and leg warmers. They will have a rad time as their theme is, naturally, The 80s.

They will dance and perform to a classic 1980s song mashed up with a fun banger. Get ready for Love Shack Bang by the B-52s and Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj.

“The Chicago Pride Guard is a bunch of people in the Chicagoland area who are color guard enthusiasts, have marched drum corps, marching bands, plus friends who have heard about our group,” said Gerry Manuel, who is a Chicago Pride Guar co-founder with Joshua De Guzman.

The 21-and-over group is filled with about 70 percent of its members from the LGBTQ+ community and another 30 percent who are allies. Several join the group from other states, such as California, Texas, Alabama, Delaware and Michigan. Members range in age from 23 to 65, with the average age in the mid-30s.

“The Chicago Pride Guard is a fun, energetic group … and most will be wearing workout gear this year,” Manuel said.

The Chicago Pride Guard made its debut in the Chicago Pride Parade in 2018 and annually partners with Steve Quick Jewelers in Lincoln Park and Odea Entertainment.

The Chicago Pride Guard has already this month participated in Pride Parades in Buffalo Grove and Indianapolis. 

“The Chicago Pride Parade is so much fun. We get to do what we love,” on that Sunday, Manuel said. “The energy during the parade is the best; I feed off that. The more we hear the crowd cheer, the more we perform our hearts out. Personally, I look for people who I know (in the crowd).

“Everyone can expect great music and a lot of energy from the Chicago Pride Guard.”

The Chicago Pride Guard is a champion of both inclusivity and fearless self-expression, with its two-fold mission: ignite LGBTQ+ awareness and allyship, as well as promote the “sport of the arts,” known as Color Guard. Boasting 500+ active performers, supporters and volunteers, the Chicago Pride Guard continues to spread love, acceptance and pride year-round.

Written by Ross Forman

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