Sweltering humidity and gloomy skies couldn’t dampen the spirits of tens of thousands of celebrants along the route of Sunday’s 2024 NYC Pride parade.

Big smiles were plastered across the faces of marchers and attendees of the annual parade, where rainbow banners and flags were displayed as far as the eye could see as participants danced in the streets, with bubbles and confetti floating up from the jubilant crowd.

The parade, now in its 54th year, kicked off at noon on the corner of 25th Street and Fifth Avenue near Madison Square Park in Manhattan, led by the LGBTQ motor club and followed close behind by a lively marching band and color guard.

NYC Pride kicked off its annual march through Manhattan on Sunday with tens of thousands in attendance. James Keivom

The theme for this year’s parade, “Reflect. Empower. Unite,” was selected by organizer NYC Pride to encourage advocates and their allies to reflect on challenges the community has faced in the past while empowering them to shape their future.

“The NYC Pride March is how we combat all the negativity; this is the celebration that brings people from every borough in the city and all parts of the world together, in joy, to share the accomplishments, talents and resilience of our community,” NYC Pride Executive Director Sandra Pérez said in statement.

This year also marks the anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, a series of violent, multi-day demonstrations and clashes between the NYPD and patrons of the Stonewall Inn gay bar in Greenwich Village in June 1969 that is credited with starting the gay-rights movement.

The parade’s reflective theme, along with the sticky weather, seemed to make for a somewhat calmer-than-usual crowd, but the marching bands still had no trouble whipping attendees into a frenzy for a boisterous rendition of Britney Spears’ and Will.i.am’s “Scream and Shout.”

The theme for this year’s parade was “Reflect. Empower. Unite.” James Keivom

Mayor Eric Adams was in attendance, wearing a blue ball cap with a rainbow embroidered on it while waving a Pride flag. He was flanked by state Assemblywoman Jenifer Rajkumar of Queens at the front of the group.

“We need a new mayor!” a handful of hecklers yelled out at the sight of Hizzoner.

Mayor Eric Adams was flanked by states Assemblywoman Jenifer Rajkumar as they marched. James Keivom

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) was spotted wearing a pair of whistles around his neck and carrying a bullhorn as he marched down Fifth Avenue, triumphantly raising his fist as he passed by the crowd.

Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) shouted to the crowd through a megaphone. James Keivom

Gov. Kathy Hochul and state Attorney General Letitia James were also spotted along Fifth Avenue during the parade.

A group of a few hundred marchers showed their support for Israel, waving flags that combined the Star of David and the Pride rainbow. They flashed peace signs as they walked, some wearing shirts that said “Jewish queer pride!”

A flatbed truck bearing large “FREE PALESTINE” banners on either side also carried a group of about a dozen anti-Israel marchers wearing keffiyehs and waving Palestinian flags.

The group on the truck cheered and shouted slogans, but the parade crowd seemed indifferent to their presence.

The parade, now in its 54th year, kicked off at noon on the corner of 25th Street and Fifth Avenue near Madison Square Park, led by the LGBTQ motor club James Keivom

The streets along the parade route became a labyrinth of barricades, which were difficult to navigate but helped disperse people from the crowded sidewalks. The roadways were flooded with entrepreneurs hawking brightly colored Pride merch, as well as plenty of spiked juice drinks and ice cream for the overheated crowd.

One enterprising peddler was Andre Mason, who had a feeding frenzy on his hands at his merchandise stand where customers lined up to buy Pride-themed paper fans at $22 a pop emblazoned with words such as “Vogue” and “YASSS!” among some more off-color designs.

“I’m here to sell my merchandise but also to engage with the community,” said Mason, who told The Post he didn’t get to see much of the parade because business has been booming.

“People gotta work — it’s New York!” he said.

Employees of stores along the parade route had the best seat in the house, with many of them seen crowding their shop’s windows to sneak a peak at the march.

The parade made its way down Fifth Avenue before turning west onto Eighth Street and continuing onto the Village’s Christopher Street, passing the Stonewall National Monument.

President Biden was joined by Gov. Hochul and superstar singer and gay icon Elton John on Friday to mark the grand opening of the monument’s new $3.2 million visitor center.

The streets surrounding the inn Sunday were almost unwalkable as everyone clamored to get a spot in the famous square. TV personality and singer Michelle Visage, best known as a judge on “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” elicited excited shrieks from the crowd as she waved from her convertible.

The festive atmosphere outside the Stonewall Inn was like a party in the streets — people drinking, smoking and dancing, many of them wearing next to nothing.

Deshawn Fisher was waiting for his friends wearing a see-through rainbow shirt made of chains.

“Today is a celebration for love and happiness,” he said, noting he just moved to New York and was celebrating his first Pride parade in the city.

Seffa Nurtez was decked out in rainbow-colored feathers and holding a paper fan. Despite the heightened security presence because of threats against the parade in March, Nurtez said he was undeterred and there to go with the flow, enjoy some bar-hopping and revel in the parade.

“Today means joy and love. Happy Pride!” he shouted.

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