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Quesnel Pride Society getting ready for 2024 parade

The Pride Society is inviting folks to head downtown in Quesnel on June 15th
Pride flag flying in LeBourdais Park in Quesnel. (Frank Peebles/Quesnel Cariboo Observer)

The Quesnel Pride Society is hosting its 2024 parade on June 15th. The parade will start at city hall at noon and will end at LeBourdais Park.

"We're really wanting to encourage the allies to come out and join because Pride is not just about people of the 2SLGBQT+ (community)," Julia Dillabough, the president of Quesnel's Pride Society, told the Observer. "It's about the allies and the people that support them as well. So you don't have to be queer to come out. You can also be an ally and come and support."

The Pride society is inviting people who attend the parade to create their own non-motorized floats with prizes to be won for the top floats.

"It'll be exciting to see people come up with their wagons or their wheelbarrows," Dillabough said, added for safety reasons everyone's float needs to be pushed or pulled by a person.

The parade will go through downtown Quesnel, those participating will escort the Pride flag to LeBourdais Park where a Lhtako Elder will bless it and the flag will be raised for the rest of June, with the exception of National Indigenous Peoples' Day. Attendees will be able to enjoy vendors at the park and a kids' zone will be set up for children.

After the event there will be an adult after party with a drag/burlesque show by The Foxxie Follies and music by DJ Scottie. Tickets to the after party are $40 in advance or $50 at the door. Advance tickets can be bought from The Den or Books and Company.

Dillabough attended the June 4th city council meeting and told council they were not doing enough to reach out and work with the 2SLGBTQ+ community, while thanking them for some improvements like agreeing to fund the updated Pride Crosswalk.

Some councillors apologized and agreed that council had more work to do, with Coun. Roodenburg saying she hasn't seen all members of council at large Pride events in past years.

"We have to do better, there's no doubt about it. I think you've got a lot of support on this council, in fact I know you do," Coun. Elliot said at the meeting. "I think council as a whole has to circle around and look into inclusive training and understanding more."

Dillabough said events like Pride parades are an important part of working towards a more welcoming community.

"It brings people together, it shows support, it promotes the community as inclusive and diverse. And it just makes people feel not alone." Dillabough said.

About the Author: Austin Kelly

Born and raised in Surrey, I'm excited to have the opportunity to start my journalism career in Quesnel.
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