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Thousands expected at NC gay fest days before DNC

CHARLOTTE, NC (AP) — Downtown Charlotte is expected to host thousands for a gay pride festival a week before the country’s Democrats come to town.

Charlotte’s annual Pride Charlotte Festival wraps up this weekend with organizers saying they expect big crowds for activities which include a concert, a poker tournament and a basketball competition.

Thousands of people annually attend the festival, which also draws dozens of protesters.

This year’s festival comes after voters decided to add a prohibition against gay marriage to the state constitution, effectively slamming the door shut on same-sex marriages.

The Democratic National Convention opens in Charlotte next week to officially nominate President Barack Obama as the party’s presidential candidate this year.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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