PHOTOS: SOMA Kicks Off Pride Month with Equality March, Flag Raising, Family Picnic

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South Orange and Maplewood celebrated the beginning of Pride Month with a variety of activities this weekend, including a march, flag raisings and a family picnic.

In attendance were youth and families from across SOMA, Maplewood Mayor Dean Dafis, Deputy Mayor Vic DeLuca, former BOE member Shannon Cuttle, current BOE members Susan Bergin, Elissa Malespina and Kaitlin Wittleder, Maplewood TC candidate Deborah Engel and Columbia High School Spectrum Club members and advisors.

Participants in the 2022 SOMA Equality March walked from Ricalton Square to Maplewood Town Hall, where youth told powerful stories and made grassroots calls to action against the more than 300 anti-LGBTQ+ bills across the country. This is the 6th year of the March.

SOMA Pride Month 2022

“Representation matters,” said Cuttle. “Visibility matters. It can save lives. It can change lives. Now more than ever action and ally-ship matters as LGBTQ+ persons are under attack across the country.”

The SOMA Youth Pride and Family Picnic was held at the Hilton Library gazebo this afternoon, and there was a great turnout. Youth and families enjoyed free pizza and ice cream and live music. The Pride flag was raised on Springfield Avenue.


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