An annual celebration of Windsor-Essex’s diversity happens this weekend in a new venue.
The 2018 Windsor-Essex Pride Festival, an event highlighting the contributions of Windsor-Essex’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered communities, along with other classifications of gender and orientation, takes place this year at Lanspeary Park, a change from its previous home at the Riverfront Festival Plaza.
The festival’s highlight is the Pride Parade, set for Sunday morning on a new route. This year, the parade begins on Argyle Rd. in south Walkerville, proceeds down Ottawa St. and ends on Langlois Ave. Thousands of people of all ages, many wearing colourful costumes and waving rainbow flags, are expected to participate.
The parade, as usual, will feature units representing different classifications of sexual orientation, as well as businesses and churches that are friendly toward the LGBTQ+ population. Elected officials on the municipal, provincial and federal levels also march.
The march is the climax of five days of events and activities. The marketplace and kids’ zone is centred this year at Lanspeary Park and both run until 8pm. Also new on the schedule this year is the WIFF (Windsor International Film Festival) Pride Film Weekend Film Screenings at the Capitol Theatre downtown. The event was scheduled for Saturday night and featured a series of films with LGBTQ+ themes.
Also taking place this week were the traditional rainbow flag-raising ceremony outside Windsor City Hall, the Glitterball after-party at the City Grille on Ouellette, along with numerous entertainment acts.
The parade begins at 11am Sunday.