CHAMPAIGN – This was the second year that kink and leather people marched together in the CU Pride Parade. The community held their parade on Sept. 17.
Seventeen people of varied genders, identities and orientations from CU RACK, The River City Bears and Mr. Central Illinois Bear marched the route on a sweltering day. The parade included close to 80 entries.
Following the parade there was an informal social meeting where Mr. Central Illinois Bear 2016, Michael Edwards, talked about what the title has meant for him and how it has allowed him the chance to grow into the person he is today. Preparations to field a larger contingent next year have already begun.