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The Montrose Center celebrates 45 years with display of Pride

25-foot flag made by Pride flag creator Gilbert Baker served as a backdrop for Community Pride Celebration.

HOUSTON — It’s a display of pride over two stories tall.

“The rainbow flag consistently reminds us there is hope,” said Kennedy Loftin, the chief development officer at the Montrose Center.

Loftin said the 25-foot pride flag that hung from the entrance of the center has historic roots.

“We are very honored to be able to hang a Gilbert Baker flag,” Loftin said.

It’s one of a number of hand-dyed and sewn flags by Baker – who created the rainbow flag in the late '70s.

“It was deliberately selected to be a symbol for our community that points to hope,” Loftin says.

On Saturday, it served as the backdrop for the Montrose Center’s Community Pride Celebration and the center’s 45th anniversary.

“As a LGBTQ organization in Texas, turning 45 is a big deal,” said Loftin.

More than 60 LGBTQ+ organizations and businesses were represented, including artist Caroline Brock.

“As a proud bisexual woman, I am very pleased to be able to represent in Houston,” said Brock.

And Kinnon Falk, whose Kindred Kitchen works to give opportunities to vulnerably housed youth with an LGBTQ focus.

“I think it’s just great to show support for people who maybe are still feeling like they can’t be themselves or they’re in a community where they’re not able to be who they are,” said Falk.

And with the flag in the background – but present – Loftin said despite recent history, the flag and its bright colors are signs of the future.

“This was a really bad legislative session for our community,” Loftin says. “After the storms, there’s a rainbow."

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