Crowds, tight security expected for Cincinnati pride parade

CINCINNATI (AP) — Organizers expect big crowds and authorities plan tight security for Cincinnati’s parade and festival events celebrating Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month.

Organizers expect attendance to top last year’s estimated 90,000 people when the parade steps off at 11 a.m. Saturday. They say the 49 slayings this month at an Orlando gay nightclub have raised interest in participation.

City officials have made public assurances that they are ready to keep the parade and festival safe.

Cincinnati Police Lt. Col. Paul Neudigate has pledged “a very robust” police presence that will include bike patrols, foot patrols and plainclothes officers.

Some participants have expressed concern about gun rights activists’ plans for an “open carry outreach” Saturday. Police say the group has been non-confrontational in the past, but they will be monitoring their actions.