Pride Festival rides high

FOUNTAIN OF RAINBOWS: Drag Queens IndiPendant, left, and  JoJo Zaho are ecstatic to be launching the inaugural Newcastle Pride Festival this weekend and are confident everyone will be feeling fabulous.
FOUNTAIN OF RAINBOWS: Drag Queens IndiPendant, left, and JoJo Zaho are ecstatic to be launching the inaugural Newcastle Pride Festival this weekend and are confident everyone will be feeling fabulous.

Organisers of the inaugural Newcastle Pride Festival, to be held on August 24-26, feel the time is right and have been blown away by the community response.

The Festival aims to create an opportunity for the dispersed LGBTQI community to come together to foster pride and celebrate diversity in the region under the theme “Freedom to be me”.

“We are really pleased with the support and enthusiasm shown by members of our communities, sponsors, partners, supporters and other allies, in this our first year,”  Lee-Anne McDougall, Co-Founder of Newcastle Pride Inc, said.  

The three-day festival, which kicks off tonight also aims to enhance the visibility of the LGBTQI community and facilitate a positive change in mainstream attitudes towards LGBTQI people

“There’s obviously a need for this in the community and we’re planning to grow this into something spectacular in the coming years,” Lee-Anne said.

“The Hunter LGBTIQ community hasn’t had been anything like this for such a long time and in the wake of the passing of the 2017  marriage equality vote, it really is appropriate that we celebrate.”

Festival Program  

Launch Event - Short ’n’ Curlies - Friday evening,  August 24, Newcastle Museum

A smorgasbord of some of the best international short films curated by Queer Screen from Sydney and hosted by Newcastle’s own comical movie reviewers David Strap-On and Margaret Pomegranates.  

Pride Fair Day – Saturday afternoon, August 25, Foreshore Park, Newcastle East

A free, family friendly  celebration lots of rainbows, community stalls, retail stalls, food vans, children’s activities, doggywood parade, Pride Costume Drag Off and lots more. Hosted by Comedian Jackie Loeb with Special Guest  Denise Hanlon.

Loud and Proud Dance Party – Saturday evening, August 25, Cooks Hill Surf Club 

Party goers encouraged to dress in their loudest and proudest glitter outfits. Beats by DJ Ruby Red and DJ Steve W and all the glamour and glitz provided by DROP DEAD DRAG, three legendary local performers.  

Priscilla Pride Wine Tour – Sunday,  August 26  

Get your Priscilla on and sing your way around the Hunter’s  wine region.  

“Our aim is to showcase to locals and visitors that Newcastle is a city of diversity, culture and beauty,” co-founder Ivan Skaines said.

“We would like to acknowledge the support of our Event Sponsors Australia Post, Hunter IVF, Port Waratah Coal Services, Newcastle City Council, and ACON; Event Partner Hunt & Gather Events; and our Media Sponsors the Newcastle Herald and HIT106.9.”

For more info  visit  www.newcastlepride.com.au.

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