Charleston City Paper‘s Greg Hambrick reports on an effort to organize a local Pride festival and parade:

Local gays and lesbians are organizing a new pride festival, expecting hundreds of supporters will join them to celebrate the growing community.

A parade is planned for May 15 in North Charleston with the festival to follow at Riverfront Park and parties held throughout the weekend.

“The point is to be visible,” says organizer Lynn Dugan. “To say, ‘We’re here.’ ”

Various events have been held in the Charleston region over the years, but an annual pride rally has been a low priority, with local gays and lesbians deferring to the South Carolina Gay and Lesbian Pride Movement’s annual event, held in Columbia every September. As lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) communities in other parts of the state become more visible, smaller events have begun cropping up elsewhere, including Greenville and Myrtle Beach.

“It’s a natural outgrowth,” says Warren Redman-Gress, executive director of the Alliance for Full Acceptance (AFFA), a gay advocacy group that focuses on educating the Charleston community on LGBT issues.

Head over to CCP and read the rest of Greg’s piece. It’s a great read.