For Vancouver’s LGBTQ community, these annual gay pride festivities – particularly the Pride Parade – might as well be called “Gay Christmas”. Along with events like the Celebration of Light, Vancouver’s annual pride events are part of the city’s pinnacle fun summer events and festivities.
Vancouver’s Pride Week begins on Monday, July 29 and climaxes with a hot bang on Sunday, August 4 with the 35th annual Vancouver Pride Parade in the streets of Downtown Vancouver and the Pride Festival at Sunset Beach. The Vancouver Pride Parade is the fifth largest in the world and this year’s attendance is estimated to reach over 650,000, a build-up after ten incredible years of growth.
Earlier this year, the City of Vancouver granted the Pride Parade civic event status – making it one of the city’s official flagship events. It’s a huge milestone not only for the once-struggling local LGBTQ community but also for the Parade itself. We are fortunate to be living in one of the world’s most diverse and accepting cities.
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All of these official Pride events, both small and major, are commissioned by the Vancouver Pride Society.
Major Pride events you absolutely do not want to miss (see below in pink for full event details):
- Tuesday, July 30 – Mamma Mia at Free Outdoor Movies in Stanley Park: The Stanley Park summer outdoor movie series will feature a LGBTQ event on this night with the screening of Mamma Mia, a long-running gay favourite. Watch Mamma Mia after dark with 5,000 other people! And yes, FREE!
- Friday, August 2 – Davie Street Party: Expect live music, DJs, dancing, street vendors and a diverse crowd of thousands ready to celebrate Vancouver Pride. It’s an after dark celebration in the street with beer! 19+ for the alcohol area. Ticketed event.
- Sunday, August 4 – Vancouver Pride Parade: 150+ fun and lively floats and parade entries, 650,000+ people, 20 city blocks long. One of Vancouver’s flagship public events. FREE!
- Sunday, August 4 – Pride Festival: 150 booths and tents, music, entertainment, food carts, free giveaways, 150,000 people. It’s conveniently located at the end of the Pride Parade route at Sunset Beach. FREE!
Saturday, July 13: Gay Day at Playland
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Hastings Park, PNE
Cost: $30.00. Buy tickets here.
Want to get your heart pumping with a rocky ride on one of Canada’s only wooden roller coasters?
Vancouver Pride is bringing the fun right outside the gates of Playland for everyone to enjoy! The Free Zone will feature a beer garden and BBQ, and the return of the Queentastic Legend’s hosted by Vancouver’s very own Symone!
A gate adjacent to GayDay will allow easy entry into Playland for those looking for even more thrills, so buy your tickets online to support Vancouver Pride. And wear your pink shirts to support anti-bullying, GayDay style!
Hosted by: Symone! and featuring the musical stylings of DJ Sista J (throughout the day)
Performances by (in order of appearance):
- Carnival Band
- Eleanor Rigby: The Untold Story
- Ada Burger
- Adam Beadle
- Kitty Liture
- Snyder Starr
- The Bobbers
- Della Devine
- Peach Cobblah
- Sienna Blaze
- Pussy Willow
- Isolde N’Barron
- Conni Smudge
Saturday, July 20: Pride Legacy Awards and Silent Auction
Time: 6 p.m. reception; 7:30 p.m. awards show
Location: The Imperial
Cost: $50.00. Buy tickets here.
The Awards will celebrate the Legacy of Pride in Vancouver and the individuals whose volunteer efforts have shaped the LGBTQ community. Eight awards will be given out, each corresponding to a color of the rainbow flag and its meaning as defined by Gilbert Baker, creator of the Rainbow Flag.
In 2013, the VPS will present the following awards to celebrate extraordinary achievement in the following categories:
Pink – Sexual Health
Red – Lifetime Achievement
Orange – Sports
Yellow – Volunteerism
Green – Creating Safe Spaces
Turquoise – Art
Blue – Community Leadership
Violet – Youth
Thursday, July 25: Pride Movie Night – Albert Nobbs
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Alice Mackay Room, Vancouver Public Library Central
Come down to the Vancouver Public Library for a free, special screening of the film Albert Nobbs!
Set in 19th century Ireland, the film follows Albert who was born a woman, but chose to live his life as a man to secure employment in a time where female independence does not exist.
This film explores gender identity in a way that truly showcases what people will do to conform to society, and is the perfect way to gear up for Pride Week!
Saturday, July 27: Pride Run & Walk
Time: 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Location: Lumberman’s Arch, Stanley Park
Cost: $40.00 by July 24. Register here.
The Vancouver Frontrunners are excited to invite you to the 2013 Vancouver Pride Run & Walk. The 9th Annual event organized by the Vancouver Frontrunners will feature an improved 5 km or 10 km run or walk course that is sanctioned by BC Athletics and chip-timed for accuracy. Cool off at our famous disco water stations along the run, and join us on our beautiful waterfront course that takes you through one of Canada’s only rainforests, boasting amazing mountain views. A bag and bike check will be available for the convenience of runners.
After the run at Lumberman’s Arch we will award top runners in each age group before we head over to Picnic in the Park and celebrate Vancouver Pride. Runners will receive a BBQ coupon and priority entry to the beer-garden at the Brockton Oval before 2:00pm.
Register now as an individual or get a team together and sign up today!
Course Records – Male: 35:36.95; Female: 39:58.93.
Saturday, July 27: Picnic in the Park
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Brockton Oval, Stanley Park
Pack your basket, throw in a blanket and meet new friends at Picnic in the Park – the official launch of Vancouver Pride 2013!
Directly following the Pride Run & Walk, enjoy live performances by the Queer Bobbers, a tug-a-war and other family-friendly games, and a volleyball tournament courtesy of Out in Sports.
Of course, there will be plenty of food and a beergarden to enjoy. And at 4pm, meet our amazing Grand Marshalls at the Pride Media Showcase.
Famous for nostalgic summer-time games, Picnic in the Park promises to bring the whole family together – dogs too!
Featuring the Musical Stylings of DJ Quest and DJ Jay Douglas.
Vancouver Pride Week Begins on July 29
Monday, July 29: City of Vancouver Pride Week Proclamation
Time: 12 p.m.
Location: Vancouver City Hall
Vancouver Pride Week kicks off at City Hall with an engaging dialogue on what makes Vancouver one of the world’s most diverse and accepting cities with respect to the LGBTTQ community. Guest speakers will reflect on how life in Vancouver and Canadian society has evolved, and the changes and progress they envision to ensure the elimination of homophobia and transphobia. Following the dialogue will be the official proclamation by Mayor Gregor Robertson and the rainbow flag rising on the north lawn.
Council Chamber Dialogue – Seating at 10:45 AM
Council Chamber, 3rd Floor, Vancouver City Hall, 453 West 12th Avenue
Proclamation and Flag Raising – NOON
North Lawn, Vancouver City Hall, 453 West 12th Avenue
Tuesday, July 30: Mamma Mia at Free Outdoor Movies in Stanley Park
Time: After sunset
Location: Cepereley Meadows (Second Beach), Stanley Park
Voulez-vous join Vancouver Pride for an outdoor movie showing of Mamma Mia!
Here’s the Name of the Game: Be a Super Trooper and join us at Second Beach for a night where The Winner Takes it All. A gay-gle of talented Dancing Queens will kick off the night with a live Spice Girls Tribute. Need more convincing? Two words: Meryl Streep. She can do no wrong.
Bring your blanket, snacks, friends and – of course – your bell-bottomed leisure suits! Watch Mamma Mia with 5,000 other people!
- For more information, see Free Outdoor Movies 2013 at Stanley Park.
August 1-3: Pride Pavilion
Time: 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. on August 1; 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on August 2 & 3
Location: Vancouver Public Library Central
In partnership with the Vancouver Pride Society, join the Vancouver Public Library for their free, family-friendly information fair! This three day event features film screenings from Out in Schools, live performances and entertainment hosted by the Bobbers, teasers from Eleanor Rigby: The Untold Story, and lots of opportunity to learn about what the community has to offer.
Thursday, August 1st
1:00pm – 4:00pm Youth-Focused Information Fair and Short Films
7:00pm Common Threads screening
Friday, August 2nd
12:00pm – 5:00pm Entertainment by the Bobbers & Information Fair
3:30pm – 4:00pm Eleanor Rigby: The Untold Story teaser
Saturday, August 3rd
12:00pm – 5:00pm Entertainment by the Bobbers & Information Fair
4:00pm – 4:30pm Eleanor Rigby: The Untold Story teaser
Friday, August 2: Davie Street Party
Time: 4 p.m. (all-ages) / 7 p.m.(19+ licensed)
Location: Davie Street (Burrard to Jervis)
Cost: Tickets available soon!
Start your pride weekend off on the right foot at the Davie Street Party, and dance with Pride to the hottest DJs of the summer!
This year, the event is changing things up and opening the street to all ages from Bute St. to Broughton St. at 4pm this year. No tickets required in the all ages area featuring performances, sports activities and much, much more!
At 7pm, the Licensed Zone (alcohol) from Bute St. to Burrard St. opens for the 19+ crowd and will feature the hottest DJs of the summer, and an amazing live performance by RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 5 winner, American’s Next Drag Superstar Jinkx Monsoon, presented by OUTtv and many other great surprises!
Music: DJ G Luve, Lisa Delux, Jeffrey Michaels, Zach Shore
Rupaul’s Drag Race Season 5 Winner Jinkx Monsoon, brought to you by OutTV
Featuring performances by:
Destineak & Mystery Guest Star
Jerome Mandrake, Ada Burger, Robyn Graves, Moses Dance Group
Sunday, August 4: Pride Festival and Market
Time: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Location: Sunset Beach, Downtown Vancouver (at the end of the Pride Parade route)
Over 150,000 Pride partiers take in the Festival and Market, which is a great place to be before, after, and even during the Parade. This celebration includes live music by local performers and the local market provides a great mix of products, services, and community organizations.
About Sara K (Performer)
Sarah K is a 26 year old R&B singer from North Vancouver. She first started singing and writing at age 13, and is now recognized as one of Canada’s most uniquely talented up-and-coming recording artist. Sarah K’s most influential singer is Mariah Carey, but she also appreciates many other contemporary R&B artists such as Alicia Keys, Lauren Hill and Joss Stone. She is always listening to the greats like Aretha Franklin and Chaka Khan to honour that soul in her voice. Sarah K plans to release her debut album later this year. Her diverse flavour of R&B, Soul and Pop has her fans anticipating its release. See more about Sara K. at http://www.sarahk.ca.
Sunday, August 4: Vancouver Pride Parade 2013
Time: Begins at 12 p.m. at the intersection of Robson and Thurlow
Location: Robson Street to Denman Street to Pacific Street (20 city blocks long!)
2013 marks the 35th Anniversary of Pride in Vancouver. This year is an important turning point for the Vancouver Pride Society (VPS), with the City of Vancouver granting civic status to the Pride Parade, now considered one of the city’s flagship events!
Attracting crowds of more than 650,000, the Pride Parade is renowned on the international stage among the largest and most successful events in the world in support of LGBTQ communities, with spectator and participants outnumbering the host City’s residents.
The event will be hosted by the ever popular Joan-E and Connie Smudge, along with Drag King Ponyboy. Our esteemed panel of judges will observe from the judging zones at Whole Foods, Safeway, and the Boathouse and award points based on the appearance, impact, and music of the entry.
These remarkable individuals represent an intergenerational and international perspective on Pride, celebrating the people who have shaped its spirit with their passion for equality:
– Susan Harman, Karin Lind and Aideen McKenna are three amazing moms from PFLAG who have contributed over a decade of service to the parents, families, and friends of Vancouver’s LGBTQ Community.
– Brandon Timmerman is an extraordinary Ontario youth who founded Brockville Pride at the age of 16 and has continued to be an advocate for queer youth.
– Zdravko Cimbaljevic is the “first out gay man” in Montenegro and the founder of its modern LGBTQ movement.
Join us for one of the most beautiful and diverse parade routes in the world!
Parade Route: The parade begins at Robson Street and Thurlow Street, heads west to Denman Street, follows Denman to Pacific Street and Beach Avenue and finishes at the Sunset Beach Festival site. Altogether, the parade route runs along 20 blocks of Downtown Vancouver’s streets.
Featured image: Shutter Pixie
Source: Vancouver Pride Society