Thousands show up in downtown Columbia for 9th annual PrideFest

Organizers put the number past 8,000

COLUMBIA, Mo. - Thousands of people showed up in downtown Columbia for the ninth annual PrideFest Sunday.

Organizers said the event was expected to draw more than 8,000 people.

That is up from last year, possibly because of several landmark advances for gay causes this year.

Those include a Supreme Court ruling overturning the Defense of Marriage Act.

"This is not  just a gay event; this is also an allied event," mid-Missouri PrideFest Director Doug Stone said. "You know, 50 percent of the booths are allies and supporters and it's your opportunity to come out and met like-minded people, you know, and just be yourself and learn some things."

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