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Auckland Pride Festival will be "young and fresh"

Sun 9 Dec 2012 In: New Zealand Daily News

Julian Cook Laying to rest speculation that the forthcoming inaugural Auckland Pride Festival will be a warmed-over Hero Festival, the project's director says Pride will be "fresh" and will reflect the changed way glbti people want to express themselves these days. Julian Cook says he himself wondered if Auckland's glbti communities might come forward with much the same style of events as typified by the annual Hero festivals of the 1990s and early 2000s. "But my feeling, looking at the forty events we have in place already, is that it's quite fresh," he says. "Surprisingly a lot of the things you might have associated with Hero aren't in there." Cook attributes the difference to "changed times and changed people... the way people want to express themselves or want to experience their own community, how they want to get together and celebrate together, I think that's all changed and I think the Festival reflects that." At the early community consultation meetings which led to the Pride project being kicked into play there was a strong call for young people to be represented and involved. "We've been working really, really hard at that," Cook says. "They're a new generation, they communicate with each other and socialise in new ways through the internet and mobile technologies so their way of getting together is quite different to previous generations. It's been quite interesting working through those processes with Rainbow Youth and a number of the younger people who are doing things." "I think a Pride Festival like this will be a new thing for a lot of the young Auckland people, especially the parade. It will be a huge thing for a large number of them," Cook says. Registrations for Auckland Pride Festival 2013 events can be made up until next Monday December 17. Details are available at the Festival's website. You can discuss this New Zealand Gay Community news story in the Forum.    

Credit: Daily News staff

First published: Sunday, 9th December 2012 - 8:46am

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