World Pride NYC Kicks Off at Barclays Center

Debbie Harry, Billy Porter, Ciara
Photo credit Getty Images

(1010 WINS) -- The wait is over!

World Pride kicked off in New York City with a benefit concert at the Barclay's Center -- the start of an expanded weekend of activities leading to Sunday's pride parade.


Meet the heroes of the movement

Listen: ChannelQ | 1010 WINS

Personal Reflections

Coming Out Stories

The show started at 7:30 p.m. and was hosted by Whoopi Goldberg. Some of the biggest names in entertainment kick off the official weekend of World Pride, including Cyndi Lauper, Billy Porter, Sara Ramirez, Daya, Chaka Khan, Ciara, and Todrick Hall.

The proceeds from the concert will be going to the Ali Forney Center, Immigration Equality and SAGE.

The Ali Forney Center is the nation's largst and most comprehensive agency dedicated to LGBTQ homeless youth assisting nearly 1,800 young people annually.

SAGE is the world's largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender older people.

And Immigration Equality is the nation's leading LGBTQ immigrant rights orgnization advocating for people around the world fleeing violence and persecution becuase of their sexual orientation.

The opening ceremonies commemorate the 50th anniversary of the riots at the historic Stonewall Inn, which sparked the beginning of the modern day LGBTQ rights movement.

More than 1 million people are expected at Sunday's parade.

Happy Pride!

Like 1010 WINS on Facebook and follow @1010WINS on Twitter to get breaking news, traffic, and weather for New York City.