Flin Flon will have another chance this summer to show its Pride.
The community’s annual celebration of LGBTQ+ people and culture will go ahead once more this summer, with a slate of events in the works and a prominent appearance coming up early this month.
This year’s Flin Flon Pride is slated to take place from July 15-23, with events taking place on and off throughout the week bookended by the festival’s most well-known traditions.
Exact dates for some events, like a flag raising at City Hall and a Pride parade or march, have not yet been confirmed - organizers must wait to get the go-ahead on a proclamation from the City of Flin Flon before doing so - but other events are confirmed to go ahead.
Included for this year’s Pride celebration will be a kickoff drag show similar to last year’s, with locally based performers on stage and out-of-town talent coming in from Saskatchewan. The show will be moved from last year’s venue, the Creighton Sportex, to the Flin Flon Community Hall July 15.
“We're making a whole gala of it. It'd be a huge event at the hall,” said Pride committee chair Jordana Oulette.
Other events will be the annual glow party July 23, as well as organizing a dance for local youths and Pride in the Park, a family event usually taking place at Rotary Park. The committee will also continue to offer school bursaries for area students, raising $500 for a pair of graduating high school students - one at Creighton Community School, one at Hapnot Collegiate - with hopes to expand those offerings later.
In the meantime, Flin Flon Pride will be taking part in a larger event to prepare - the group will take part in Fierte Canada Pride in Winnipeg June 3, where members of the committee will march and work with other Pride groups from across Canada. Fierte Canada Pride is an organization made up of LGBTQ+ Pride festival organizers from across Canada, holding a major meet-up each year in one Canadian city. This year, the meet-up is in Winnipeg and Oulette said Flin Flon will have a presence there.
“Flin Flon Pride will be marching with Canada Pride. We have a booth set up and we’re really participating in it. We're really excited,” said Oulette.
“It means we’ll get to celebrate Pride twice this year.”
Oulette said Flin Flon Pride was sponsored to take part in this year’s Canada Pride event by a subchapter of American LGBTQ+ group Dykes on Bikes, which has allowed Flin Flon Pride members to take part in the annual national celebration.
“They're going to do like a Canada village area at The Forks in Winnipeg. It’s going to be Pride groups from all over Manitoba, all over Canada, that want to set up a booth. They've reserved us a booth, which is our own tent, which is really awesome,” Oulette said.
“They're expecting 90,000 people to go through the festival. It's a huge networking thing for us.”
While preparations are ongoing for the local Pride this summer, committee members are planning both for that event and for the appearance at the national gathering.
“We're just right now in full force preparing for Canada Pride while still planning our stuff,” Oulette said.
“Most of our stuff is pretty simple - we’ve got the community pumped up for the drag performance."