Braden Holtby, goalie for the NHL's Washington Capitals, will march in Saturday's DC LGBT Pride parade, starting at 4:30 p.m.
"I am honored to represent the Capitals and participate in this important event that shines light on the contributions the LGBT community makes every day," Holtby said in a news release by the You Can Play Project. "I believe in equality for all people and I look forward to showing my support along with our organization and fans."
Holtby and his wife, Brandi, have gotten themselves involved in LGBT issues, as the goalie told Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post.
Holtby said the topic comes up occasionally in the Caps' dressing room, but that You Can Play's efforts have significantly advanced LGBT issues in the NHL community, to where acceptance "is just the norm." Brandi also plans to march in Saturday's parade, and Holtby said they hope to become "more and more involved" with such issues in the future.
"You're making a bigger statement for a cause that we feel is necessary to society," Holtby said of his appearance. "It just seemed like a no-brainer to me."
It's with allies like Holtby that acceptance is achieved, helping to pave the way for an out player one day.
Here is the release on the event from You Can Play:
The Washington Capitals and goaltender Braden Holtby are proud to announce their support and take part in the Capital Pride Alliance's 2016 Capital Pride Parade presented by Marriot Rewards, scheduled for 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 11, in Washington, D.C.
Holtby will participate in the Pride Parade walking with Capitals mascot Slapshot, Red Rockers, Washington Wizards Wizard Girls, Washington Mystics Energy Squad and Monumental Sports and Entertainment staff members in conjunction with the You Can Play Project. You Can Play is an organization dedicated to ensuring equality, respect and safety for all athletes, coaches and fans, without regard to sexual orientation and/or gender identity. All members walking in the contingency will wear #RockTheRainbow shirts.
"I am honored to represent the Capitals and participate in this important event that shines light on the contributions the LGBT community makes every day," said Holtby. "I believe in equality for all people and I look forward to showing my support along with our organization and fans."
The parade's theme is Make Magic Happen and is part of 2016 Celebration of Pride in the Nation's Capital presented by Hilton. The Celebration events are comprised of more than 25 events celebrating the spirit and strength in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) communities in Washington, D.C. and the national capital region.
The annual Capital Pride Parade draws 150,000 spectators, travels 1.6 miles through segments of the city important to the LGBT community, and this year will include more than 180 contingents. The celebration is produced by the Capital Pride Alliance, a nonprofit entity incorporated in the District of Columbia with the purpose of supporting, celebrating and inspiring our diverse communities with the annual Capital Pride events and related activities throughout the year.
For more information on the Capital Pride Parade and the complete schedule of events during the 2016 Celebration of Pride, visit CapitalPride.org.