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Pride kicks off in Philadelphia ahead of a month of celebration, drag shows and more

Philadelphia drag queen Brittany Lynn shares why celebrating Pride matters more than ever
Philadelphia drag queen Brittany Lynn shares why celebrating Pride matters more than ever 02:33

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Pride season in Philadelphia officially kicked off Thursday when organizers gathered in Rittenhouse Square for a giant rainbow flag dedication. 

Pride was fully on display outside the Sofitel Hotel, and inside, one of Philly's iconic drag queens talked about why Pride Month matters now more than ever. 

"If there's one thing that gay men and older women in fancy hats have in common, we love to gossip and have a good time, and that's what drag tea is all about," said Brittany Lynn, head of Philly Drag Mafia and Drag Queen Story Time program. 

Twice during June, Lynn and other drag performers spill the tea with fans in shows at the hotel.

"We give this gorgeous setup and all these wonderful teas and all these desserts and we have all these sandwiches and scones and you also get to see jaw-dropping performances by myself and the Philly Drag Mafia," Lynn said. 

The partnership has been in the works for five years.

"It's Saturdays here in the month of June for Pride Month," Lynn said. "Proceeds always go to a major charity." 

The launch kicks off hundreds of activities around the city. Organizers say this will be one of the biggest pride seasons with a record-breaking 400-foot flag that represents everyone.

"It's signal that Philadelphia is a place that's inclusive, that lifts up all of its residents and anyone else who wants to come here and join and be part of the love that Philadelphia brings forward," Tyrell Brown, executive director of Philly Pride 365 and GALAIE, said.

READ MORE: What you need to know about Philadelphia Pride March and Festival road closures, security, more 

For Lynn, the start of Pride is more important now than ever, with more than 500 anti-LGBTQ bills in legislatures across the country.

"It's a constant battle," Lynn said. "Thirty years later I'm surprised we are still discussing this, which is why it's important in June to show your authentic self and be who you are and show the world that's OK." 

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