Want to celebrate Vancouver Pride but not sure where to start? Vv Magazine’s Helen Siwak rounds up the best events to attend from now until the end of the month.
The 2016 Vancouver Pride Society announced the theme for this season is ‘Better Together’. For many members of the LGBTQ2+ community, isolation is a very real issue and joining in at PRIDE is a great way to meet others in the community. There are many other events and activities in addition to the Pride Parade and the Vancouver Pride Society has a calendar that is being added to every day. Below are our suggestions on how to work out a balance of business and pleasure over the next two weeks and celebrate Pride.
Vancouver Pride Premiere
At 8:30pm, TD Canada Trust will be partnering with the Vancouver Pride Society to throw their biggest and grandest Pride party yet. If you purchase your ticket before 5pm on July 15th, there’s a bonus! You will also go into the draw to win a private booth for the night including bottle service with a Magnum of Moet! Tickets to the event are $5 per person.
Pride Run/Walk & Picnic
At 9am, Vancouver Frontrunners and the Vancouver Pride Society will be donning kicks, flip-flops, and stilettos for the PRIDE Run & Walk + Picnic. This is an energetic and hilariously outrageous 5.5k walk or run route along the scenic waterfront where costumes are encouraged and prizes abound. Registration is required and costs $30-$40 depending on whether you’re running/walking solo or in a group.
From 8pm to 3am, Celebrities will be packed with party animals. A combination of an ambitious musical program with top DJs, cheap hi-balls and a ‘zero-tolerance policy for hate’ makes this dance party so welcoming. There is a cover or $10 at the door or you can visit their website for Guest List.
Pride BINGO for LIFE
Veteran duo Carlotta Gurl & Mina Mercury will be joined by DJ Del Stamp to host Pride Bingo for Life, one of the most popular and outrageous community events held during Pride Week. The queens will start pulling balls at 8pm. Go for incredible prizes, cheap drinks, and snappy drag queen humour. $10 donations are accepted to play with 100% of proceeds benefiting the Vancouver Friends for Life Society.
Following BINGO is the infamous Pride Cabaret, where the celebrity impersonation show is Las Vegas-worthy and full of icons such as Cher, Celine Dion, Tina Turner, Madonna, Amy Winehouse, and Bette Midler.
CruiseyT Pride Kick Off: Underwear Fashion Show
CruiseyT has teamed up Andrew Christian and Vancouver underwear designer Dirt Squirrel to bring together a night of sexy men in underwear, a runway show, and go-go dance performances. DJ Pornstar spins while Cory Lee (Andrew Christian model) and Derek Bedry (Mr. Gay Canada) hit the stage for a double-header Underwear Fashion Show. Dirt Squirrel will be holding a pop-up shop for those needing a new pair! Tickets to this event are $10.
Davie Street Party
Starting at the Community Stage at Davie Street’s historic Rainbow Crosswalk, pound the pavement to some of the city’s hottest DJ talent and witness the annual Wimple-In ceremony of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. This is an all ages and free event except for those wishing to imbibe. Advance tickets for 19+ guests are only $5 and a wristband must be worn to drink.
Terry Wallace Memorial Breakfast
This by-donation community breakfast honours one of the founders of Pride in Vancouver. Recovery from the Davie Street Block Party couldn’t be sweeter than indulging in syrup-covered pancakes and other breakfast delights.
Pride Parade + more
Two words: Justin Trudeau! Our Prime Minister will march in the parade this year and the city is stoked.
Sunday is a full day of PRIDE and it is a full day of activities, so some carb loading at brunch is advised! Here is a suggested guideline for newbies who may find themselves swimming in a sea of people, revelry, and love and lose all concept of time management.
At 10am hit The Boathouse (tickets are $45) for a quick brunch and watch the parade from the restaurant or haul it down to the Pride Festival at Sunset Beach for music and celebrating until the kick-off of the 38th Annual Vancouver Pride Parade gets rolling at 11am. The crowds will be as thick as molasses with colour and personalities – expect 650,000 to line the parade route as the floats start rolling.
When the Parade is over, work your way up that steep Davie Street hill to Celebrities for History Sunday and the T-Dance with Best Butt contest hosted by Heineken and Iona Whipp. This party lasts until 4am and is a marathon you won’t want to miss if clubbing is your thing.
The PRIDE festivities will have a second special guest this year – Taryn Manning (Netflix OITNB) will be DJing at the Chicas party from 4pm-9pm. This Flygirl event is part garden gala and daytime club event hosted by the Sheraton Wall Centre on Burrard St. Tickets are $50 per person.
For those wishing to stay Untoxicated, at 6pm join other like-minded folk at Bute & Davie for a street dance party or nap until 8pm where you can hit Club 8 x 6 on Haro St for the Annual Naked Pride Party hosted by PCAN. Now PCAN isn’t a clever name referring to delicious Southern nuts but the Pacific-Canadian Association of Nudists. This really is a get naked kind of party!
This is a list that could go on and on as PRIDE gets closer so watch the Vancouver Pride Society calendar for new announcements!
Did we miss any of the best events for Vancouver Pride 2016? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us at @ViewtheVibe.