History of Gay and Lesbian Life in Milwaukee, Wisconsin - Organizations - Activist & Political - PrideFest

Milwaukee LGBT Pride Celebration - 1989
"Stonewall 20: A Generation of Pride"
- At A Glance -

Saturday, June 17, 1989


Parade from Bar District to
Cathedral Square for Rally


approx. 1,000 people


format: (none)
pages: (n/a)


Mayor's proclamation sparks wide publicity

News Articles

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1989 was the second year of operation of the new Milwaukee Lesbian/Gay Pride Committee (MLGPC).

In June of 1989, approximately 500 people marched the two miles from the Walker's Point bar district, past City Hall, and to Cathedral Square for a rally where another 500 people had gathered.

This particular event generated a great deal of controversy in the City of Milwaukee, especially when the proclamation from Mayor John Norquist ended with the words, “We are proud of who you are.” Both the mayor and county executive were threatened with recall campaigns initiated by religious-based conservative groups. By the end of the day, the MLGPC march and rally was the opening story on all three major news telecasts and featured on the front page of the Sunday Milwaukee Journal. However, the experience did not deter planners for the following year. In fact, the experience turned out to be a rallying point for many people in the LGBT community, spurring more people to get involved with the community. The city could not ignore its LGBT citizens because the LGBT community would no longer allow it.

The Board of Directors for 1989 Pride was (in the order they were listed in the Pride Guide):

  • Miriam Ben-Shalom
  • Kevin R Quadin
  • Don Clabots
  • Tim Strum
  • Susan Cook
  • Gary Wells
  • Jerry Johnson


Official Flyers, etc.

History of Pride

"Why So Many Fundraisers?"

1989 Financial Statement
(included in late 1990 financial report of the MGLPC)

MGLPC Update newsletter, page 1

MGLPC Update newsletter, page 2

MGLPC Update newsletter, page 3

MGLPC Update newsletter, page 4

Schedule, page 1

Schedule, page 2

Parade Schedule

Parade Route

Parade Rules

Parade Application Categories

Suggested Chants




Resolution of the MGLPC

Proclamation of the City of Milwaukee

Proclamation of Milwaukee County




Pride Committee Plans for 1989
(In Step, volume 5, issue 23, pages 14 + 16)
Milwaukee Pride Week efforts in high gear
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 9, May 11-24, pages 16+18)
Ad, La Cage Wet Jockey Shorts Contest, fundraiser for Gay Pride Parade committee
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 11, June 8-21, page 17)
Cover Photo of Pride Parade, 1989
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 12, June 22-July 5)
Jet's Place benefit for Pride committee members, 1989
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 12, June 22-July 5)
Photos of Pride Week, 1989
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 12, June 22-July 5)
First Milwaukee Pride parade in years stepped off, commemorating 20 years since the Stonewall riots. Estimates of participants ranges from 1,000 to 2,000. Congressman Jim Moody was on hand as well.
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 13, July 6-19- page 3)
Pride Parade and Rally at Cathedral Square: speakers, awards, etc., including Sue Cook and Don Clabots of MLGPC; former Police Chief Robert Ziarnik, historians Dr. Terry Boughner and Jamakaya, AIDS activist Dan Trzebiatowski, and others.
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 13, July 6-19- pages 4+5)
Article: 'Gay Pride to Gay Bashing', examination of gay name-calling in Milwaukee;
+ photo of Community Speakout during Pride Week
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 13, July 6-19- page 7)
Continuation of article 'Gay Pride to Gay Bashing'
(In Step, vol. 6 no. 13, July 6-19- pages 8+9)

Credits: design and arrangement by Don Schwamb.
Last updated: December-2011.