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New York City's gay pride parade steps off Sunday in Manhattan

Spectators turn out for the 2013 NYC Pride

Spectators turn out for the 2013 NYC Pride parade in Manhattan. (June 30, 2013) Credit: Charles Eckert

The world's premier pride parade returns to New York City on Sunday, commemorating 45 years since fed-up bar patrons rebelled against police raids on their gathering places and jump-started the LGBT-rights movement.

The parade, which begins at noon, starts at 36th Street and Fifth Avenue and ends at Greenwich and Christopher streets -- the site of the Stonewall Inn.

The parade commemorates the rebellion: June 28, 1969, when patrons at Greenwich Village's Stonewall Inn stood up to the frequent occurrence of police raiding gay bars, which were illegal at the time.

The first march was in 1970.

In the four decades since, the battle for rights and acceptance of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people has made enormous strides, including overturning anti-sodomy laws and a growing legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

"Yesterday's struggle is today's heritage" is the parade's official slogan.

The parades have spread to cities and towns around the world.

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