New West Pride Week extends to nine-day festival
By Julia Siedlanowska, Staff Writer
The Douglas College Pride Community is organizing a “Tye-Dye Party” for August 16 as part of New Westminster’s Pride Week.
“Pride Week and Pride in general are to celebrate LGBTQ+ rights. It’s to celebrate who we are, [living] life unashamed, and the support that we receive from others,” said Douglas Students’ Union pride liaison Nicole Landingin-Dougall. “I was approached by the Royal City Pride Society to see if we could do an event in collaboration with New Westminster Pride Festival. We decided on a tie-dye party because of how fun (and messy) it can be. We wanted to do an event that was fun for everyone.”
The Royal City Pride Society is celebrating its fifth anniversary this year by extending its annual festival to a nine-day event, including a street party on New Westminster’s Columbia Street. From August 8 to the 16 the festival will provide events and entertainment such as the Stonewall Dance, a kick-off party at the Metro Hall, and the Vancouver Gaymers Monthly New West Meet-Up, where patrons are welcome to have lunch with the club followed by an afternoon of board games at Board Game Warriors. Steel & Oak Brewery will also be present at the event with a Bold and Fruity Cask on tap, prepared especially for the New Westminster Pride Festival. Other events and entertainment include exotic male dancers performing at Status Nightclub, Comedy Night at the Lafflines Comedy Club, as well as a performance by Queer as Funk at the Columbia Theatre.
The street party will also begin on August 16, just outside the Columbia SkyTrain station on 4th Street and Columbia Street from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. Emceed by Barb Snelgrove, Co-host of QueerFM RELOADED and on-air reporter for OUTlook/Outtv, the Health Initiative for Men Main Stage features a lineup of musicians such as Patrick Masse, Michael Fraser, DJ SupaFly, as well as I Am Mandrake. There will also be performances by drag queens and kings including Leada Stray, Monik Sparks and Miz Adrien.
The Douglas Pride Community will be hosting “Tye-Dye Party” on the day of the street party from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Douglas Students’ Union building. They will also be selling snacks and refreshments.
“The idea is simple: we tie-dye clothing items for you for free!” says Landingin-Dougall. “We hope to reach out to the community to let everyone know that the DSU Pride Community is here for you.”
The Pride Community manages the pride room located in the far left corner on the third floor of the Douglas College Students Union Building at the New West campus, and is available for students year round.
“We are here for students, we have a full library of resources, and students are welcome to come and chill with us,” says Landingin-Dougall.