Capitals goalie Braden Holtby marched in the annual Capital Pride Parade on Saturday, the third time in four years he has taken part in the event along with his wife, Brandi.
The couple has long demonstrated their commitment to supporting LGBTQ+ rights. They rode on Monumental Sports and Entertainment’s float, tossing beads and t-shirts into the cheering crowd lining every step of the 1.5-mile route between P Street around Dupont Circle and up 14th street.
“It’s been something that we’ve been able to do for a few years,” Holtby said. “From the first year we were able to do it you can tell just the joy and the change that it can bring. We just want to show our part. The thing I’m most proud of is our team and Monumental are here beside us showing support and trying to teach the younger generation about what we believe in.”
The Holtbys had fun with it. They road a float adorned with a basketball hoop, which Braden Holtby at one point used to dunk a t-shirt tossed to him as he played to the crowd. At various points along the route fans chanted “Holtby!” and “C-A-P-S Caps, Caps, Caps.” They also jumped off the float multiple times to take pictures and shake hands.
Brandi Holtby has participated in the event the past four years. But Braden Holtby wasn’t able to make it to last year’s parade on June 9, 2018, as the Capitals had their team celebration after winning the Stanley Cup two days earlier. Holtby for a time during last year’s city-wide weekend party even sported a Pride hat given to him by an attendee.
In a perfect world, of course, Holtby wouldn’t be able to make it every single year. That would mean the Capitals are in the Stanley Cup Finals. That didn’t happen this year after Washington lost to the Carolina Hurricanes in the first round of the playoffs. But in that case, he and Brandi were happy to lend their support again at an event they’ve come to love.
“You won’t find a place that’s this happy or a crowd that’s enjoying each other’s company more,” Holtby said. “If you’re here there’s no way you can’t have fun.”
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