Calgary is about to get a lot more colourful, as Calgary Pride Festival 2018 kicks off on August 24 and lasts through the Labour Day weekend.
Pride parades and events occur annually around the world to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall riots in New York City, a decisive moment for the modern LGBTQ movement.
According to its website, Calgary Pride’s mission is “to promote equality and celebrate Calgary’s diversity.”
Check out this list of family-friendly events surrounding the upcoming Calgary Pride Festival:
Friday, Aug. 24:
- WHAT: Calgary Pride Flag Raising
WHEN: Noon to 3 p.m.
WHERE: Municipal Plaza, 800 Macleod Trail S.E.
Speeches will be hosted by Calgary Pride, Minister of Education David Eggen, GSA students & teacher, and Michelle Robinson
- WHAT: Raft on the Bow 2018
WHEN: Aug. 24 at 1 p.m. to Aug. 26 at 3 p.m.
WHERE: Bow River, between Shouldice Athletic Park to St. Patrick’s Island Park
Boaters are encouraged to wear bright colours and bring accessories to help get into the spirit. A portion of ticket purchases from The Paddle Station go to the Calgary Chinook Fund and Chinook Lesbian and Gay Endowment Fund.
Saturday, Aug. 25:
- WHAT: Pride Tailgate with the Calgary Stampeders
WHEN: 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
WHERE: McMahon Stadium, 1817 Crowchild Trail N.W.
A tailgate preceding the Stampeders game against the Winnipeg Blue Bombers with a live DJ, face painting and more. The first 100 people to arrive receive $10 in Calgary Stampeders Bucks. Tickets to the game purchased with the promo code “PRIDE” donates a portion of those tickets to You Can Play and Calgary Pride.
- WHAT: Launch of the Rainbow Railroad Station
WHEN: 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
WHERE: End of the Rainbow Foundation, #4, 1515 Centre Street S.
A brunch to launch the Rainbow Railroad Station, supporting LGBTQ+ refugees from around the world to Calgary. Tickets are a suggested donation to the End of the Rainbow Foundation.
- WHAT: Pride in Vic Park: Youth & Senior Tea Social
WHEN: 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
WHERE: Calgary Central Library, 616 Macleod Trail S.E.
An afternoon tea for the LGBTQ+ senior and youth communities in Calgary, to be followed by a History Walk with YYC Legacy Project’s Kevin Allen.
- WHAT: Pride in the Square featuring RIEL
WHEN: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
WHERE: C-Square, corner of 7 Avenue S.E. and 4 Street S.E.
Metis singer-songwriter RIEL and local DJs perform in celebration of Calgary Pride’s opening weekend.
Sunday, Aug. 26:
- WHAT: Love, Community and Acceptance Party
WHEN: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
WHERE: Studio Bell, 850 4 Street S.E.
Five levels of exhibitions and daily tours at the National Music Centre and Studio Bell, including talks on sexual and gender inclusion from the Centre for Sexuality, performances by local drag queens and kings, storybook readings by National Music Centre staff, a Kindness Graffiti Wall, and more, with a $13.50 entrance fee.
- WHAT: Progress Pride Flag Raising
WHEN: 11:15 a.m.
WHERE: Hillhurst United Church, 1227 Kensington Close N.W.
Hillhurst United Church will be raising a new flag, designed by Daniel Quasar, that integrates the six-colour rainbow pride flag with colours to represent the transgender community, Indigenous community and people of colour.
- WHAT: Pride in Vic Park: Pride Your GSA
WHEN: Noon to 5 p.m.
WHERE: Central Memorial Park, 1221 2 Street S.W.
GSA students will be plotting their school on a map and share their GSA’s accomplishments, as well as partaking in arts-based activities.
Tuesday, Aug. 28:
- WHAT: 2nd Annual Pride Block Party
WHEN: 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
WHERE: ContainR, 1010 2 Avenue N.W.
A lineup of entertainment for all ages, including headliner Neighbour, the Fake Mustache Drag King Troupe and Safire Hoop Dance. Also includes food trucks and a cash bar. Donations at the door go to Skipping Stone Foundation.
- WHAT: Pride in Vic Park: Trans & Non-Binary 101
WHEN: 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
WHERE: Calgary Public Library
An informational session on trans and non-binary gender identities, covering language, experience and tips for developing understanding of those identities.
Wednesday, Aug. 29:
- WHAT: Pride: A Conversation
WHEN: 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
WHERE: West Hillhurst Community Association, 1940 6 Avenue N.W.
An informal session and Q&A with a panel of seven interesting LGBTQ+ Calgarians. Registration is required, but walk-ins are welcome, and the session is free to attend.
Friday, Aug. 31:
- WHAT: Pride Shabbat Dinner & Services
WHEN: 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
WHERE: Temple B’nai Tikvah, 900 47 Avenue S.W.
The second annual community Shabbat dinner in celebration of Pride, bringing together Jewish and non-Jewish LGBTQ+ community members and allies to celebrate the intersections of the Jewish and Pride communities. Tickets are $10-18, and are available until Aug. 24.
- WHAT: CMC Sing-along: The Greatest Showman
WHEN: 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
WHERE: Globe Cinema, 617 8 Avenue S.W.
Join the Calgary Men’s Chorus for a family-friendly sing-along with a showing of The Greatest Showman. Circus attire encouraged.
- WHAT: Outliers: Calgary’s Queer History screening
WHEN: 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
WHERE: 1221 2 Street S.W.
Outliers: Calgary’s Queer History takes a look at the political, social and historical forces that have affected Calgary’s queer community over the past six decades. Tickets are by donation.
Sunday, Sept. 2:
- WHAT: Calgary Pride Parade
WHEN: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
WHERE: Along 6 Avenue S. between 3 Street S.E. and 6 Street S.W., along 6 Street S.W. between 6 Avenue S.W. and 3 Avenue S.W.
The 28th year of the signature event brings all the colours of the rainbow to downtown Calgary. Street closures below:
- WHAT: Pride in the Park
WHEN: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
WHERE: Prince’s Island Park
Free outdoor cultural celebrations follow the Pride Parade at Prince’s Island Park, with live music, activities for youth and children in the family zone, adult beverages in the beer gardens and a marketplace.
- WHAT: QPOC & Allies Patio Party
WHEN: 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
WHERE: Voices, 1240 12 Avenue S.W.
A patio party for all two-spirit and racialized LGBTQIA+, along with trusted friends and family. Bring your own chair. Buzzer code to be released on the day of the party.
- WHAT: De Mule ah De World
WHEN: 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
WHERE: CommunityWise Resource Centre, 223 12 Avenue S.W.
“A multimedia exploration of black womanhood by spoken-word artist and emerging photographer Mel Vee in partnership with the Canadian Cultural Mosaic Foundation.”