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Colourful ‘rainbow’ picnic tables honour Pride at Lanspeary Park

Colourful sitdown. Members and supporters of the Windsor Essex Rainbow Alliance are shown Thursday, Aug. 3, 2023, at the official unveiling of six bright new rainbow picnic tables set up in Windsor's Lanspeary Park. PHOTO BY DOUG SCHMIDT /Windsor Star

What better way to celebrate Windsor as an inclusive community than some bright new splashes of colour in Lanspeary Park?

“Currently, there’s nothing in our city that recognizes our community on a permanent level,” said Walter Cassidy, chair of the Windsor Essex Rainbow Alliance.

That’s now changed, thanks to the alliance and its partners, with the addition of six “rainbow” picnic tables with seating and umbrella shades along the park’s Ottawa Street entrance.

Just in time for Windsor-Essex Pride Fest — which launched Wednesday with a city hall flag raising and continues through August 13 with Lanspeary Park-focused events next Friday to Sunday — the idea was to “create a social space where all are welcome to gather and that recognizes that the 2SLGBTQIA+ community has a place at the table,” said Cassidy.

Windsor’s Pride history stretches back two centuries, he added.

The $33,000 community project was made possible through a partnership with a number of government and non-government agencies — the federal Canada Healthy Communities Initiative, WindsorEssex Community Foundation, Windsor Pride Community, Rotary Clubs of Windsor, and the City of Windsor.

“Investments like the one unveiled today at Lanspeary Park are vital to strengthening Windsor-Essex and ensuring we are creating safe community spaces for all residents to enjoy,” MP Irek Kusmierczyk (L — Windsor-Tecumseh) said at Thursday’s “lunch & launch.”

As part of this year’s Pride Fest, Cassidy, a local high school teacher and historian, leads a two-hour guided bus tour on Sunday that looks at Windsor-Essex County 2SLGBTQAI+ history. The Queer Tour starts at 11 a.m. at Windsor Market Square, 2109 Ottawa St.

Originally posted in the Windsor Star