Folks in Sioux City hoped a message of love would counter the Westboro Baptist Church.
A peaceful picnic drew dozens to Cook Park all afternoon.
Many in attendance are members of the "Siouxland Pride Alliance" and the First Unitarian Church, which sponsored the event.
Free food, music, and fellowship were on the menu.
Attendees said their goal was to show what Sioux City stands for and show support for equal rights.
"We just want to make sure that everybody knows that this community is about love. It's not about hate and that we support gay rights, and that we support individuals in our community," said Julie Hlas, First Unitarian Church.
Hlas, who has two students at East High, said she used the protest at their school as an opportunity to talk to her children about free speech and equal rights.
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