By Stephen Vick
Last Sunday, June 26, about 16 Intelligentsia employees (and a few friends) marched in the 42nd Annual Chicago Pride Parade, serving roughly 15 gallons of cold-brewed coffee to a lucky handful of the 750,000 people who were in attendance. Weather forecasts had been warning of very mild temperatures and even teased at the possibility of rain on our parade, which would have been less than fabulous. As the day progressed, however, the gay gods blessed us with nothing but clear skies and warm temperatures … a perfect day for celebration.
The morning began at 8am at the Roasting Works when Amy Lawlor and Jenny Moylan (Stephen Morrissey’s much better half) met up with two very sleep-deprived boys, Stephen Vick and Luke Rickerson, to gather up three radio flyer wagons, four Cambros full of cold-brewed coffee, backpack beverage dispensers, paper cups, and an 8-foot banner, then transport it all up to Broadway. The rest of the crew met us up there at 10 to assemble the wagons, figure out the dispensers and walk down to our line-up location.
A delay in the parade’s start after some malicious vandalism the night before allowed for the Intelli marchers to get to know each other a little better, get some liquids into our system, and get some pre-march dancing under our belts.
There may or may not have been some taking off of pants as the afternoon sun got hotter and brighter. Props especially go to Mr. Rickerson, who marched the entire parade in ROLLERSKATES, not taking a fall even once during the four-hour event.
Pride is nothing new for Intelligentsia. Back in the Days of Boni™, we even featured a float filled with toga-clad Intellites. Our presence once again in the parade was met with excitement and appreciation by the community, and I hope that we can continue this tradition year-after-year. Thanks again to everyone who volunteered their time to help out.Killer queer shirts that Intelligentsia had made for the 2011 Pride Parade.