MINNEAPOLIS -- This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in New York City.

On June 28th, 1969 police raided the Stonewall Inn a gay club in Greenwich Village, leading to six days of protests and violent clashes with police outside the bar. Many people consider that event to be the catalyst for the gay pride movement.

As far as the Stonewall riots, yes it was definitely the catalyst for how we know it now, it brought it to the forefront, and so each year we commemorate that with Pride.

Twin Cities Pride Board Chair Darcie Baumann says while rights and protections for the GLBT community have come a long way in the past 50 years, there is still more work to be done.

Until we have all the rights that are the same -- currently transgender people cannot serve in the military -- until we can be equal across the board, that's why we need to celebrate Pride.

This weekend is the annual Twin Cities Pride Festival. It is the largest free Pride in the United States with between 300,000 and 400,000 people expected to participate. Events kick-off Friday with the Beer Dabbler, other events include Pride in the Park and Loring Park, and the parade in downtown Minneapolis at 11:00 a.m. Sunday.

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