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Thursday, February 21, 2013

Auckland's Pride Parade

Auckland's Pride Parade
Guest blog by The Liberal Agenda

I went to my first ever Pride Parade this year. The last one happened when I was 12 and I don’t think I even knew they existed back then. This also means I have nothing to compare it to, so the lack of crowds/glam/gay/politics (all criticisms I’ve read elsewhere) didn’t detract from my experience so much as I wasn’t referencing the Parades of old.

Yeah, some of the floats looked pretty DIY, but I’m actually quite a fan of that. I like when things have a human touch (prepare to read that a lot) imperfections and all. I appreciate the effort and passion that has gone into its construction.

I liked seeing the politicians out and felt actually quite emotional seeing the armed forces (not a fan in general). I was also seriously impressed with the best use of segways I’ve ever seen. I boogied my butt off to ‘Call Me Maybe’ and left with one of those cheek-aching grins spread across my face.

I did question, as someone who has worked in HIV prevention, how it could have been given so little focus. I do feel quite strongly that this was a prime opportunity to do some serious public education and in my opinion free condoms doesn’t really cut it.

That said, if the purpose of the Parade was celebration and community and a good time, then it was certainly achieved. I hope very much that the Parade is here to stay and it gets bigger and better in the years to come. In fact, I have complete faith that this is what will happen and am relaxed that any wrinkles will be ironed out. Good things take time.

I just have one more thing for the organisers to think about. Passed on from Miss 3 (also at her first Pride Parade), whose biggest concern was that nowhere at the ‘Rainbow Party’ could she find any dip.



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