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'Sacred Cloth' Pride Flag ceremony at Colorado Springs City Hall

'Sacred Cloth' Pride Flag
Posted at 7:40 AM, Nov 23, 2022

UPDATE: The City of Colorado Springs posted on social media Saturday that the 'Sacred Cloth' Pride Flag has now been repaired and is back up on City Hall. The city thanks Debi Kemper with the Kemper Dance Academy and other local artists for donating their time and effort to repair the flag.

At Colorado Springs City Hall, a section of the historic Rainbow25 flag was unfurled outside the building to honor the lives lost, those wounded, and a community impacted by Saturday's shooting at Club Q.

However, after strong winds damaged the flag on Thanksgiving day. The city is working to repair the flag and get it back on City Hall.

The event at City Hall drew a crowd of hundreds that sang, cheered, and supported the LGBTQ community.

The 'Sacred Cloth' Pride Flag, which measures 14' by 25', is one section of the historic flag sewn by Gilbert Baker in 2003 to mark the 25th anniversary of his 1978 creation of the original pride flag.

The original was 1.25 miles long for a display in Key West, Florida. It features 8 colors, compared to the 6 more commonly used today. After the display, it was cut up into sections, with section 93 declared the 'Sacred Cloth.'

It is displayed in Orlando, Florida, following the 2016 Pulse nightclub shootings and has returned to the city every year on the anniversary of the attack.

“As Colorado Springs mourns, we are heartened that this historic flag has been offered for display,” said Jessie Pocock (she/her), Inside Out Youth Services executive director and CEO in a release. “We are grateful for this incredible demonstration of compassion.”

San Francisco Pride
Picture of a pride flag in San Francisco, California. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

What's the story behind the Pride Flag?

During Pride Month, it is not uncommon to see the rainbow flag being proudly displayed as a symbol for the LGBT+ rights movement, but how did that flag become a symbol of pride?

June has long been recognized as LGBTQ pride month, in honor of the Stonewall Riots, which took place in New York City in June 1969. Gilbert Baker, an openly gay man, designed the first rainbow flag. Baker was urged by Harvey Milk, one of the first openly gay elected officials in the U.S., to create a symbol of pride for the gay community.

Baker decided to make that symbol a flag because he saw flags as the most powerful symbol of pride.

The very first rainbow pride flag was designed and hand-made by Baker and a group of volunteers in 1978 for the Gay Freedom Day Parade in San Francisco. It wasn't until 1994 that the rainbow flag was truly established as a symbol of pride.

Now the rainbow flag is an international symbol and can be seen flying proudly across the globe.

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