Grand Island sees first major LGBTQ Pride event

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - In Grand Island Saturday, the LGBTQ community celebrated their first major pride festival. People gathered at Pioneer Park and marched through downtown.

Grand Island LGBTQ organizations put on their first major pride event. (KSNB)

The senior pastor at the First Congregational Church has been in GI for just over a year now. He said there has been struggles in the past with people feeling comfortable being open about who they are.

“It's groundbreaking for Grand Island for us to be public and to celebrate who we are as human beings,” Reverend Steven Mitchell said. “Especially in a community that has not exactly been open to a lot of fringe types of groups.”

Reverend Mitchell is the first openly gay pastor in the area and is looking to help more people in the community.

“This church a year and a half ago stepped out of its comfort zone and official became what the United Church of Christ calls open and affirming,” Mitchell said. “Which means that we recognize that God loves you no matter who you are.”

Those who attended held their pride flags of all different kinds, shared resources and support. Grand Island now joins Hastings and Kearney with hosting larger scale pride celebrations.