West Virginia mayor won't rename Christmas parade

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The mayor of West Virginia's capital city quickly withdrew a decision to change the name of the annual holiday parade after intense backlash from church leaders.

News outlets report Mayor Amy Goodwin announced on Monday that she planned to rename the "Charleston Christmas Parade" the "Charleston Winter Parade" to demonstrate that Charleston is an inclusive city.

Officials from several churches quickly criticized the decision and said they wouldn't attend. State Senate President Mitch Carmichael released a statement calling on the mayor to allow citizens to exercise their freedom of religion.

Goodwin publicly reversed her decision on Thursday. In a Facebook post, she said "the kind of vitriol that has come forth" over the name change has been "disappointing and hurtful."

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