PHOTOS: Polk Pride rises up for fifth annual celebration

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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LAKELAND, Fla. | Polk Pride held its fifth annual celebration at Munn Park June 15.

“We’re not Tampa and we’re not Orlando,” Polk Pride Executive Board Member Dustin Shay shared ahead of the gathering. “There’s still a heavy need in the Polk County area to provide a safe space and opportunities for activism and celebration.”

This year’s theme was “Rise UP,” commemorating the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. Emcee Trishelle Michaels was joined by fellow entertainers Allegra Williams, Crystle Chambers, Ja’Staria Sherrington and Japonica Werk, all of whom dazzled audiences alongside the newly-crowned Miss Polk Gay Pride Star Montrese Love and Miss Polk Gay Pride Newcomer Trixi Allshade. The Central Florida Sounds of Freedom Band & Color Guard and Tampa Bay favorites Halcyon also captivated the crowd.

Watermark was on hand to celebrate all things Polk Pride—check out our photos below.

Photos by Dylan Todd, Russ Martin, Ryan Williams-Jent.

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