Eugene/Springfield PRIDE Sets Attendance Record With 3,000 at the Park

EUGENE, Ore. (Aug. 14, 2007) An estimated 3,000 attendees were on hand for last Saturday's Eugene/Springfield PRIDE at Alton Baker Park the biggest turnout in the event's 17-year history, organizers say. Taking into account attendance at six LGBTQ parties scheduled throughout the weekend in conjunction with PRIDE, total attendance for all PRIDE weekend events was closer to 4,000. Celebrants at the main PRIDE festival enjoyed a beautiful afternoon with a full slate of musical entertainment and performers, as well as appearances by Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy, state Senate Majority Leader Kate Brown, Sens. Floyd Prozanski and Vicki Walker, state Rep. Chris Edwards and Lane County Commissioner Pete Sorenson. "Our attendees, our special guest and our vendors all seemed to agree that this was the biggest, best and most profitable PRIDE event ever in Eugene," said Festival Coordinator Jer Megowan. "We're already looking for ways to make it bigger and better for next year." Though the day was overwhelmingly positive, celebrants were reminded of the necessity of PRIDE celebrations when about a dozen anti-gay protesters showed up in the mid-afternoon, standing adjacent to the PRIDE grounds and brandishing placards. PRIDE celebrants largely ignored the protest, refusing to meet hatred with hatred.