Regina’s Queen City Pride Festival will cap off more than a week of events with a Pride parade expected to be the city’s biggest.
The Queen City Pride Festival kicked off June 9 and wraps up Sunday. This year’s festival has more than 55 events, making it the largest Pride event held in Regina.
Dan Shier, co-chair of Regina Pride, said Saturday’s parade has just over 80 entries (about the same as last year) but that the number of people taking part in those entries is expected to double in some cases. He added that the contingent from the City of Regina “is supposed to be huge this year.”
Shier said all are welcome to take part in the Pride festival.
“If you’ve never been to Pride before, come with an open mind and open heart, and take in the love that’s in the air,” he said.
“Hopefully, you learn something. Everything is open to everybody; you don’t have to be part of the LGBT community to participate.”
Amnesty International as grand marshal
The 2017 parade’s grand marshal is the human-rights advocacy group Amnesty International.
“That is meant to recognize the work that they do around the world to protect the LGBT community, advocate for our rights,” said Shier.
Participants in the parade will include community groups and organizations, sponsors, government and political entities, churches, unions, and local businesses.
Staging of the parade on 13th Avenue between Broad Street and Scarth Street starts at 10 a.m. CST Saturday. The parade begins at noon and follows a loop along Victoria Avenue, Broad Street, College Avenue and Albert Street back to Victoria Avenue.
There will also be a Pride march following the parade.
“Spectators watching can join in once the parade passes through,” said Shier.
There will be an outdoor festival in Victoria Park from 1-5 p.m.
“If even at least one person learns something or takes something positive or valuable away from the festival, that’s what I’m looking forward to — hearing stories about that,” said Shier.
“Every year, I hear someone’s story and it’s what makes it worth it for me.”
The Saskatoon Pride Festival’s parade is next Saturday, June 24.