British Columbia

In-person Vancouver Pride Parade replaced with more than 60 unique events

The Vancouver Pride Society says COVID-19 won't pause the celebrations and acknowledgement of Pride this year, but will result in a unique, adapted version that does not include the usual parade.

No parade, but festivities will be one of the first in-person summer events since the start of the pandemic

A large rainbow flag is carried by people marching in the 2019 Vancouver Pride Parade. The 2021 event will include many events, but not the typical parade. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press)

The Vancouver Pride Society says COVID-19 won't pause the celebrations and acknowledgement of Pride this year, but will result in a unique, adapted version that does not include the usual parade.

The organization is hosting more than 60 events including in-person and digital experiences that will run from July 3 to Aug. 3.

Vancouver Pride Society says this will be one of the first in-person summer festivals since the start of the pandemic in 2020.

"It was important to us to create celebrations that everybody can participate in, and although we have had to make the incredibly heartbreaking decision not to go ahead with our iconic parade, we are excited to launch our hybrid season festivities," Andrea Arnot, executive director of Vancouver Pride, said in a statement.

Organizers will be bringing a series of COVID-safe Pride lounges to downtown Vancouver. They will pop up from Jim Deva Plaza, Stanley Park Brewpub and šxʷƛ̓ənəq Xwtl'e7énḵ Square at the Vancouver Art Gallery.

How it works

Attendees will be able to book a time slot for up to six people within their bubble.

While the parade won't go ahead this year, on Aug. 1 there will be a digital, decentralized Pride Parade broadcast.

The broadcast will include pre-recorded videos from Vancouver Pride's community partners, live events in multiple locations as well as photos popping up on the broadcast tagged with #VanPride.

Organizers are encouraging people to celebrate and take up space all around the city. Whether it's a picnic in the park, dressing up in Pride gear or marching with loved ones down the street, organizers say the "celebration is about being loud and proud."

Throughout the month, there will be Pride art walks, drag storytime, Pride lounges, queer history panel and more.

Organizers encourage attendees to register online first for the event they'd like to attend, even if it's free, in order to follow public health guidelines during the pandemic.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Zahra Premji

Host/Reporter

Zahra Premji is a host/reporter for CBC News Vancouver. She has worked as a host for CBC Alberta News in Edmonton, and a reporter in B.C. and Manitoba on various stories from racism to health and crime to asylum seekers and immigration. You can reach her at zahra.premji@cbc.ca

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