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National Celebration At Independence Hall - May 1, 2005

Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the GLBT Civil Rights Movement

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Twenty-eight (28) national and international GLBT Executive Directors, 105 non profit organizations and 30 Statewide organizations are joining together for the National Celebration at Independence Hall on Sunday, May 1st for the 40th Anniversary of the GLBT Civil Rights Movement. A permit has been issued by Independence National Historical Park , National Park Service (NPS) for the celebration.

Saluting Gay Pioneers

"The first demonstration for gay and lesbian rights occurred on July 4, 1965 , in front of Independence Hall and Liberty Bell in Philadelphia with Gay Pioneers from New York , DC and Philadelphia ," stated Sally Susman, National Co-Chair, 40th Anniversary Celebration. "We will salute the Gay Pioneers, who started the movement and honor 40 Heroes, who over the past 40 years have been leaders of our movement."

Largest Gathering in History

"Never in the history of the movement have more national and international Executive Directors, non profit organizations and statewide GLBT organizations joined together. The National Celebration will be a historic event and statement of our solidarity," stated Malcolm Lazin, Executive Director, Equality Forum.

National Celebration - Sunday, May 1st

The National Celebration on Sunday, May 1st is on the concluding day of Equality Forum 2005. Equality Forum 2005 from Monday, April 25 to Sunday, May 1 has over 70 programs, parties and special events. There is no registration fee and all substantive programs including the National Celebration are free.

Program

"The National Celebration includes Salute of Gay Pioneers and 40 Heroes, entertainers, 40 rainbow flags on Independence Mall, interfaith service, large street festival, programs at the National Constitution Center, screenings of "Gay Pioneers", Gay Icon Pavilion, parties and concert," stated Jonathan Capehart, National Co-Chair, 40 th Anniversary Celebration. "The 40 Heroes are impressive from Bayard Rustin to Barney Frank, MTV to Melissa Etheridge, Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin to Kevin Bourassa and Joe Varnell, Larry Kramer to Andrew Sullivan."

Equality Forum

Equality Forum annually presents the largest national and international GLBT civil rights forum. Equality Forum with WHYY/PBS co-produced "Gay Pioneers", a documentary film about the start of the GLBT civil rights movement with annual demonstrations in NY, DC and Philadelphia from 1965 to 1969, prior to Stonewall. "Gay Pioneers" was named Best of the Year for 2004 by The Advocate.

For More Information

For more information about the programming at Equality Forum 2005 & National Celebration or the names of the 40 Heroes, 105 non profit organizations or 28 national and international GLBT Executive Directors, visit www.equalityforum.com or contact Michael Pomante at Michael@equalityforum.com or (215) 732-3378 x15.

Travel discounts can be found on the web site. Over 20 hotels are offering lowest rate.

For information about "Gay Pioneers", visit www.gaypioneers.com.

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