Sunday, July 27, 2014

PRIDE!!


Today was the 20th annual PRIDE Parade here in London.  The skies went from clear, to cloudy and back to clear again throughout the day, but the rain held off until evening.   I have walked in the parade a few years, and this year was the first that my employer, Western University, would be represented in the parade, so I put on some purple and joined the party.

I had to get my photo taken with Western's mascot, JW.  Even though the sun wasn't out, it was still warm, and I'm sure it was extra sticky inside that mustang suit.  I, on the other hand was quite comfortable in the thrifted jumpsuit I found yesterday at Talize.  Participants were offered Western t-shirts to wear in the parade, but if I was going to wear purple, it was going to be my own version, thank you very much.

There are a lot of photos in this post folks, so I decide to organize them into three categories:  The Colours, the Faces and the Parade.

The Colours.... 

 

While we were waiting in the parking lot at the Western Fairgrounds for the parade to get underway, I took advantage of the time to get shots of the glorious colors.

Of course, there are always balloons

This group was rocking their rainbow colours in every form, from tie-dye to fun fur

The parade is usually led by the Dykes on Bikes, and their rainbow flag-decorated motorcycles were ready to roll.

The London Middlesex Roller Derby Girls, the Backlash Betties, were there

The Forest City Derby Girls were a veritable rainbow on wheels

You could see this woman from all the way across the parking lot

Some people took the colour thing to the extreme

This group of Amazons (and a budding warrior) were no less visible in their earth tones


The Faces....

 

When I got to the parking lot where everyone was assembling prior to the start of the parade, I saw this young woman standing by herself, and she prompted a lot of questions in my head - was she part of a group?  Was it her first parade?  What was she thinking about as she was standing there?

The Pride Parade, which caps off over a week of Pride Festivities, has really become a family affair

There was a time when most of the people who walked in, and watched the parade were gay men, but not so anymore.   Gay, straight, old, young, ethnically diverse, two-legged and four-legged - we all come together to celebrate diversity and to proudly show our true selves to the world.

There is still fabulousness and flamboyance, but the number of drag queens in the parade has declined over the years.

They have been replaced by organizations like the London Police Services, various political parties, London firefighters, law firms, financial institutions and non-profits.  And then there are the regular folks like those in the photo above.

This year saw more canine participants and supporters than ever - I call them the Pups of Pride!


The Parade!

I was part of the purple pack walking behind this banner, which looks more blue than purple most likely because of my dying camera.

I didn't know we had such a large Druid contingent in London

This woman's outfit made my jumpsuit look downright conservative by comparison

The Warrior Queen in full regalia - this woman makes her own costumes and every year I look forward to seeing what she's come up with.  She deserves a special award just for walking the entire parade route in heels.

Pride for all

This couple had the best sign in the parade

The Forest City Derby Girls were rollin'

After the parade, two friends took the obligatory selfie

We paid a visit to the Come As You Are booth to check out the latest toys, wolfed down a Burrito and parted ways.    I was invited to drink Prosecco with some neighbours on their porch, which was the perfect ending to an all-around good day.  I think it may have to become an annual tradition.

Happy Pride Everyone!

11 comments:

  1. Isn't it great that these events are becoming so commonplace and family friendly and inclusive! Hurray!! It looks like a great day.

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  2. Dare I say that this coverage probably put your local newspaper to shame... Great photos of a fantastic day. And that new flirty jumpsuit looks awesome on you, the colour and the style are perfect. Let's hope these positive vibes carry over into the rest of the year.

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  3. It looks as though you had a really great time, Shelley! Love your purple jumpsuit.
    Great opportunities for people watching (dogs too!) and I really enjoyed seeing all the colours and costumes, I can feel the good vibes from here! The Amazonian Warrior Queen looks incredible, and I am loving that your woman's rainbow eye make-up.
    Finishing off the day with friendly neighbours and a glass of prosecco sounds perfect! xxxx

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  4. That jumpsuit is stupendous on you Shelley! Pride is always a great time. This event has everything to make you smile, think, and talk to strangers.
    My sister and I walked in our first pride parade in 1992 with a sign that said, we love our gay HIV + DAD. The love we felt that day from strangers almost burst my heart, it was like finding family. I was just thinking selfishly yesterday how I miss the gay my dad brought into my life. Is that weird? It's not, I miss it.
    Thanks for being a part of it all and sharing it with us!
    Xxxxxxoooooooo

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  5. What a great day! Everyone is so cheerful and beautiful. Your new jumpsuit looks awesome on you.
    We don't have anything like that here - this crap town lives in the dark ages full of drunk idiots and pretend Christians who have more volume than knowledge when they open their mouths. Sigh. Thank you for taking and sharing all of the pictures so I can walk vicariously through you.

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  6. What a great day out. I love your jumpsuit, what a fab find, it looks wonderful.
    That Amazon group are gorgeous and the "dick" placard is very true. xxx

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  7. Great coverage of PRIDE, Shelley. Festive and colorful, as are you in your jumpsuit. I've attended many a Pride parade in Denver, and your photos resonate with my experience. Happy to hear that you celebrated with Prosecco after the festivities. It's all about community!

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  8. Awesome photos - I love that "dick" sign!

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  9. wouuu, great report and fabulous pics, lovely people, lovely colors and rainbows all around, and lovely you wearing your purple jumpsuit with lots of pride and attitude!!
    no pride parade here in my little town, just great cities enjoy a real pride parade!, so sad!
    besos

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  10. Hi Shelley!

    Montreal has a big gay parade as well! I probably missed it!
    Your report is fabulous! You captured so many great moments and people
    I love as well the dick sign

    Hugs

    Arianexo

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  11. That Warrior Queen is absolutely amazing.

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