Photos Courtesy of Sam Rubesch

Lynne Hermansen
Over 200 people attended the second annual Gardner Kansas Pride Parade and family friendly festivities on Saturday, June 18.
The parade went down Main Street to Daylight Donuts and back to the Johnson County Fairgrounds at 10 a.m.
DJ Phil of Pro Sound provided music, vendors included 9 Round of Olathe, Saint Andrew Christian Church of Olathe, Craftology, Amazon, Jacey’s Sweets, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and Modern Family Alliance.
Children enjoyed face painting, a balloon artist and KC Photo Bomb photobooth.
Amazon presented a check for $25,000 to Modern Family Alliance. Speakers included Katie Williams, USD 231 Board Member, Jae Moyer, Chair at LGBTQ Caucus of the Kansas Democratic Party, Dr. Chris Wilson, Senior Pastor at Saint Andrew Christian Church, and Keith Davenport, candidate for the 43rd District of Kansas.
Jujubee, a RuPaul’s Drag Race contestant gave a message through video.
Attendees were entertained by Kansas City Pride Community Alliance Royal Court – Harley Q. Lunar, Duchess of Kansas City Pride 2022, Hayden Lee Sunshine, King of Kansas City Pride 2022, Romeo Eros Shawn, Duke of Kansas City Pride 2022 and emcee Melissa Uptown, Gay City of Fountains America 2022.
Drawings were held for a number of prizes from Amazon including an Echo Show 8, Echo Buds with Noise Cancellation and Alexa, Fire Tablet 10, and a Fire Stick 4K.
Many businesses donated prizes including gift cards from Walmart, Target, Wilson Chiropractic, Mazee Nail Spa, Inspire Dance Academy, Celebrity’s Cheese Steak Burgers and More, Dairy Queen, Frontera’s Mexican Restaurant and Cantina, and Hamburger Mary’s.
Gardner KS Pride said they plan to hold more events throughout the year.
“We seek to symbolize, promote and provide an inclusive community for Gardner’s Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Transgender and Queer citizens and their allies,” they said. “Our mission is to support and encourage these members of our community to fellowship together, so we may feel loved, accepted and respected as we embrace our most authentic selves.”