Kamloops Pride Week is back with brand new, big events | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kamloops Pride Week is back with brand new, big events

People walking in the last Kamloops Pride Parade in 2019. Pride Week 2022 is returning after a two year COVID hiatus.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/ Facebook, Kamloops Pride

Kamloops Pride Week is back after a two-year COVID hiatus, and it is expected to be bigger than ever.

The week is jam packed with fun activities, starting with a gathering at the Pride Week Kickoff event at the Riverside Park Bandshell at 11:30 a.m. Monday, Aug. 22.

“Some city councillors and the mayor are planning to attend and speak,” said president for Kamloops Pride, Ashton O’Brien. “We have invited a Tk’emlúps elder to do a land acknowledgment.”

O’Brien is seeing more people attending local monthly events with the organization. More businesses are reaching out for partnerships and there is a lot of engagement from sponsors for Pride Week.

O’Brien is predicting a bigger-than-ever turnout this year, but the week is more than a joyful celebration.

“This is a reminder the queer community is here and we are not going anywhere,” they said. “Kamloops is still not a safe place for the queer community, we are still trying to create safe spaces here. Our organization continues to receive hate mail. This is why this is important.

“It is not OK for anyone to feel unsafe,” they said.

READ MORE: Kelowna unveils what it hopes will become its 'signature' summer event

Kamloops Pride started in 2013 as part of an organization that has been evolving since the 1990s. Pride Week 2022 runs from Monday Aug. 22 to Sunday Aug. 28.

New to the event list this year is a day full of drag entertainment.

“Saturday starts with the Drag Storytime event, followed by a drag brunch at Match Eatery,” O’Brien said. “Then we will have two drag shows, one for all ages and one for adults only. We are bringing performers from out of town to do talent and comedy shows.”

The colourful week includes a few different dances, a window decorating contest and a scavenger hunt. A variety of vendors are participating.

READ MORE: Kamloops farmers' market packed with supporters

When asked what the most anticipated event was for the week, O’Brien said the last day is what people are most excited about.

“The parade, festival and an after party will wrap the whole week up,” they said. “There is definitely energy building up for it.”

To view event details for Pride Week 2022 click here. 

To contact a reporter for this story, email Shannon Ainslie or call 250-819-6089 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © iNFOnews, 2022

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