Chicago, IL -
The City of Chicago is making several changes to the 46th Annual Chicago Pride Parade in an effort to curtail excessive and illegal drinking as well as post-parade mayhem.44th Ward Ald. Tom Tunney announced the changes in a June 3 statement released to ChicagoPride.com. The city will enforce a zero-tolerance policy for drinking along the parade route, including fines up to $1,000 for open containers, with checkpoints along the route. Parade entries have been limited in size to reduce the length of the parade, which should cut the running time from over 3 hours to just 2 1/2 hours. There will be increased resources for cleanup after the parade.Tunney said the changes, which were made by an advisory group of community stakeholders, are meant to improve the parade's impact on Lakeview residents.Last chance for Pride Parade to stay in BoystownAfter more than 1 million people crowded into the neighborhood last June and a number of arrests were reported, some residents began to question if the event had outgrown its home in Boystown. In April, it was announced that the Pride Parade will remain in Lakeview and Uptown at least for one more year. "If we do not see a serious improvement in behavior and the parade's impact on our surrounding residents' quality of life this year, we will have no choice but to move the parade out of Lakeview," said Tunney. "This is a key year for determining whether or not the pride parade will stay in our community."Security added for Pride Parade
As ChicagoPride.com first reported on Monday, PRIDEChicago
, the parade organizers, will provide a security team
of 90 off-duty police officers to supplement the Chicago Police presence along and surrounding the parade route before, during, and after the parade.Northalsted Business Alliance also announced it will provide another 20 private security officers in the area from 3 p.m. until after bars close.Boystown bars do their part
And a number of Boystown with 4 a.m. licenses have voluntarily agreed to close at 2 a.m. to help end the night earlier.
"In keeping with Northalsted's 'Keep Pride Proud' campaign, we are more than happy to do our part as responsible members of our community," Sean Kotwa of Hydrate Nightclub
told ChicagoPride.com. "We will do what is necessary to help ensure that the city's Pride celebrations are fun but more importantly, safe and respectful of our neighborhood."
Tunney concluded, " Let's all work together to ensure that the Pride Parade is a positive reflection of the LGBT community, our neighborhood, and the city of Chicago."
The Chicago 46th Annual Pride steps off at noon on Sunday, June 28 from the corner of Montrose and Broadway. The route continues south on Halsted, east on Belmont, south on Broadway and east on Diversey to Lincoln Park. Related
: Out country star Ty Herndon to lead Chicago Pride Parade, June 28Related
: Pride Month kicks off in 'Chicago's Proudest Neighborhood'