Friday, July 1, 2011

PRIDE Saskatoon 2011: Part I - Parade, June 11, 2011

Text and photos (c) Robert Barry Francos
Photos can be enlarged by clicking on them

I arrived at the parade late, with it already in progress. Dropped off a block away, I ran and ran (and ran) to get to the front of the procession, which went on for many block. It was much larger than last year's, I'm pleased to say.

Saskatoon has a large and vocal gay population, and that number was more than equalled by friends, families, and supporters, who lined the route, marched alongside, or rode on the floats. Car horns honking and people applauding were met by cheers from the participants and onlookers alike.

Here are some of the images I captured along the parade route, with some varied comments in between.

Diva's, arguably the top spot in town to see drag shows, was a sponsor of the parade and fest that followed. Their float had it's own DJ at the turntables, playing beats and lively sounds.

I love the image of the tattoo'd mom on skates next to the flag-carrying stormtrooper. No one was excluded.

Drag kings and queens abounded.

As with last year, Saskatoon's roller derby league was present and in force.

Religious groups also made their presence felt, one even offering to marry anyone, an obvious open letter if you will to those government clerks who recently refused to do so for "religious" reasons; they were told they must do so anyway by the courts.

The Punisher!
Note the two-fronted car, both of which have steering wheels. Rainbow Cinemas are the second run, cheaper theaters that we all love.
The only two "leather boys" I saw that day. The "Bear Flag" symbolizes men who like other hairy men (

While politicians were in attendance, it was interesting to note that the largest group making an appearance were NDP (liberal), with a couple of Liberals (moderate conservatives), and no Conservative or Saskatchewan Party (both strongly conservative with "religious" bent) represented.
NDP candidate, coordinator of AIDS Saskatoon, and our friend, Nicole White, on the right.

The next blog will be about the festival that followed the parade.

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