NC Pride asks forgiveness over Yom Kippur conflict

DURHAM, North Carolina (WTVD) -- NC Pride organizers are asking for forgiveness after scheduling their annual parade and festival on the same day as the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur.

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Each year people from all across the state pack into Durham for the celebration, but this year thousands of people won't be able to participate because of the conflict.

"It's very disappointing to us. It's another example of our calendar not being respected," said Adam Organ, Executive Director of the Raleigh-Cary Jewish Community Center.

The festival has been held on the last Saturday of September for the past 17 years, but this year it coincides with one of the Jewish community's holiest days of the year.

There are more than 15,000 Jewish households in Wake County alone.

"We have members in our community that are LGBTQ. We have Rabbis in our community that are very supportive, and it's unfortunate that on our holiest day of the year there's an event going on that we wouldn't be able to show our support," said Organ.

The Raleigh-Cary Jewish Community Center has been working with Jewish leaders in Durham to get the date moved, but for now it remains unchanged.

ABC11 reached out to NC Pride for a comment but has not heard back.

The organization released a statement on its website:

"...As our event has become larger, the City of Durham, Duke University and other community events in the fall have planned around our event on that established weekend. Even so, we feel the need to recognize this year's conflict to our Jewish friends. (We) Ask for their forgiveness and look forward to their participation in our event in future years."

RELATED: Read the full statement here.

The Jewish community is asking for compromise from its long-time allies.

"Scheduling can be a challenge with any event, but this is the holiest day and there's a segment of the community that's not going to be able to be represented as a result of this decision," said Organ.

Jewish leaders in Durham are working on a separate event in October.

Organ said the Jewish community is Raleigh may also team up with Durham for another event this fall.
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