Presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton made a surprise appearance at the NYC pride march yesterday, walking along the route for a few blocks on Christopher Street before Stonewall Inn. She was joined by Mayor De Blasio and Governor Cuomo near the historic bar, which was recently designated as the first national monument to the gay rights movement by President Obama.
Last week, Governor Cuomo also declared the bar—the site of a historic riot in 1969 that served as the catalyst for the modern gay rights movement—to be a city and state landmark.
RECOMMENDED: Full coverage of Gay Pride in NYC
Participants in the march were celebrating that accomplishment while also remembering the 49 victims that died in the recent shooting at the gay club Pulse in Orlando. A moment of silence was held at the beginning of the march, and the owner of Pulse Nightclub, Barbara Poma, was among those riding in the lead float.
We've had our moment of silence, and the March has begun! pic.twitter.com/unUDIPBchS— New York City Pride (@NYCPride) June 26, 2016
As a result of the shooting, there was a significantly higher security presence this year as well as activists demonstrating for gun control legislation. Police officers were a constant presence along the route and plainclothes cops worked their way through the festive crowds.
In addition to more political contingents like Gays Against Guns and a Queer Muslims float, there were also numerous corporations in attendance including Hilton, Delta, Walmart, Die Coke, Vitamin Water, Dasani and Kiehl’s. With the giant crowds, added police presence and large amount of people wanting to show their support after Orlando, the march was still going at 8pm, eight hours after it had started at noon.