Our Rainbow Connections
We made it Gold Coast! The inaugural Pride Week Festival, hosted by the Gold Coast Rainbow Community Queensland Inc Events has come to an end, but it’s really only the beginning.
Months in the planning brought us a feast of festive functions to tempt all, from the most reluctant to the most intrepid members of our colourful local community, to come out and play.
“It’s a team effort and you are part of our team.” was the message group organiser Vince Siciliani was anxious to spread throughout this week of frolicking fun.
Launched back in October 2020 at Dukes nightclub, this Beach Pride celebration was welcomed with a wealth of enthusiasm by a local LGBTIQ+ community who want, more than ever, to embrace and express their vibrancy, vivacity and diversity.
The week was awash with events, beginning on the 23rd May with the Gender Fluid Gay Family Picnic and Drag Queen Bingo followed by Paint and Sip at Burleigh, group outings to Movie World and Draculas, the fabulous White Party at YOT Club, a Beach Walk With Pride, an After Party at the Surfers Paradise SLSC and all concluded on the 30th May with a farewell Beach Party at Kirra.
Hostess with the hottest heels in town, Ms Carmen Taykett, was at most of the events to add her glitter, glamour and pizzaz to the proceedings.
Her powerful rendition of ‘I Am What I Am’ at the end of the Beach Walk brought a lump to many a dry, salty throat, a nod to our unique community flavours and perhaps a theme for future ‘fruity’ frivolities.
The Pride Parade along the Surfers Paradise beachfront sand was a world first and ceremoniously marked the inception of the Gold Coast Festival.
After photo ops under the Surfers Paradise sign and covorting down Cavill Avenue, we assembled for a few frothy ales upstairs at the local Surf Club to chat, mingle and dance with our new and old mates. Connecting with our community was the focus at this casual after party with a twist.
The White Party on YOT was a highlight for many a seaman and seamaid. Gathering at about 4pm in our finest unsullied attire, our gorgeous group of vestal voyagers launched into a liquid wonderland of colour and celebration on the high seas. Well, the Broadwater at least.
The YOT Club was the perfect venue for some ribald revelry and the spectacular gold and mauve sunset didn’t disappoint as a gala backdrop.
DJ’s Sammy, Bolt and Big Furr kept us on our feet for as long as our heels would allow and impressive performances by Carmen and her crew were welcome breaks for reconnecting with our groups.
Sadly, at about 8pm, we docked for disembarkation and private parties were spontaneously organised. Note to self, next time have that part coordinated before sailing off into the sunset.
The Beach Party at Kirra was the farewell performance for this year. Food trucks, market stalls and rainbow recovery at the open-air bar marked the final ‘fair day’ style event for the festival.
The judging of Miss Gold Coast Pride saw our local drag babes out in fierce force and looking their most dazzling for the finale.
Ms Justine Deeva was the winner of the beautiful crown for the first ever strut-off and she certainly had some vigorous and voluptuous competition.
Unfortunately, the planned sky diving couldn’t go ahead because of inclement and uncertain conditions but the day did draw a friendly, lay back crowd which was a fabulous way to end off the week.
After a year of pandemics and pandemonium a Pride Party was just the shot in the arm we all needed to make our world get glowing again. ‘Where to next’ we hear you say. Meetings and planning will no doubt be on the agenda for a bigger and brighter 2022 bash but it will all hinge on our community being ‘part of the team’.
Thanks Vince and the Gold Coast Rainbow Community Qld for launching us into this new and dazzling domain.