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Helsinki Pride photo gallery: Angels, reverends and a Prime Minister

Police estimate that between 70,000 and 80,000 people attended the Helsinki Pride parade on Saturday.

Harri Leppänen (left) and Jari Kiviranta. "The first time I dared to join the parade was in 2015, after Jari convinced me to join," Harri Leppänen said. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle

Helsinki Pride week culminated in the Pride parade on Saturday afternoon, the first time the event has been organised since 2019.

Helsinki Pride Board chair Panu Mäenpää told Yle that the event went well and there were no reports of any disturbances, although there had been fears beforehand of such a possibility.

Yle followed the procession from Senate Square to Kaivopuisto park, and also asked the participants how they think attitudes have changed over the years.

Ansku Bergström, Riitta Suominen and Elina Gustafsson taking a selfie at Senate Square just before the parade started. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
People began gathering at Senate Square for the 2022 Pride march at 10.30am. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
"It's great that today's youth accept diversity," Hanna Jäppinen and Sanna Suomalainen told Yle. They added that Pride raises awareness, visibility and normalises differences. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Juho, dressed in white wings, told Yle he decided on his outfit a long time ago. "I wanted to be like an angel fallen from heaven," he said. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Henri Hellsten, Tero Lahtinen and Jukka Pellikka. "I myself came out of the closet in the early 2000s, before that I was always trying to change," Lahtinen said. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
The steps of Senate Square were full of people by 12 noon on Saturday. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Lola, Darling B, Violet, Marley Davidson and Lady in Black — performing under their stage names — took part in Helsinki Pride for the first time. They are part of a burlesque group for over sixty-year-olds. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Minna Väistö taking a selfie with Prime Minister Sanna Marin (SDP) at Senate Square. "Marin is a good Prime Minister who has handled things well," Väistö told Yle. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Participants in the Helsinki Pride parade walking from Senate Square. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
At the corner of Aleksanterinkatu and Mannerheimintie, a person with a megaphone shouted "What is this illegality"? The Pride parade participants responded with chants and songs. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
"30 years ago, I couldn't have been here in a skirt," 69-year-old Seppo Kiuru said. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Helsinki Pride week was first celebrated in 2000, and the event has been held every year since 2006. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Ari Helenius, Heini (who went by her first name only), Heli-Sanna Hautsalo and Ellen Karlsson on Mannerheimintie. The four are members of the Afrodisiac dance group. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
"I want to show my support by dressing like this [in his priest's clothes]," 78-year-old Reverend Jaakko Harjuvaara from Järvenpää told Yle. "There is nothing here that goes against the Bible, in my interpretation." Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Juha Järvinen, Iisa Paanajärvi, Amos Järvinen, Ami Paanajärvi, Amanda Järvinen and Ari Paanajärvi joined the parade. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Until the 1990s, the Pride parade was known in Finland as Vapautuspäivät, or Liberation Days. The name was later changed to Pride, in line with international practice. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
The parade neared Kaivopuisto park by 2pm. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Miss Lumiere, Marko Fali, Jere Sivonen and Manu Uimi aka Cici Mast on Kasarmikatu. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
Prime Minister Sanna Marin (SDP) and her entourage arrived at Kaivopuisto shortly after 2pm. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
"Attitudes have changed a lot, first we were outlaws and then we were sick. But today things are better. You define who you are and what you do. It's up to you what you think about your gender identity, no one else. I define who I am," Maria Palmroth from Hamina told Yle. In the photo, Palmroth is kissing her wife Pirjo Mielonen. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
"I came here to meet other poly people," said 47-year-old Sami Kyllönen from Järvenpää. "In recent years, attitudes have changed a lot and the situation has improved. Young people have access to information about different identities and orientations online. It's nice that old prejudices have been overcome." Image: Silja Viitala / Yle
The Pride march ended with a picnic in Helsinki's Kaivopuisto Park. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle