The first annual Christchurch Pride Week has been declared a huge success, with more than a thousand people attending the week's events, despite it being completely ignored by the mainstream media. A huge variety of events were staged across the city, from celebrity debates to dance parties, drag king and queen shows, and even a Rocky Horror performance. A Safety In Schools programme was also well attended by local schools. Pride Week culminated with the Candelight AIDS Memorial, ending a week of celebration with some time for reflection and remembrance. The Christchurch City Council and the New Zealand AIDS Foundation provided financial support for Pride Week, the proceeds of which will be donated to community groups. Pride Week co-ordinator Brent Mitchell says it is disappointing that neither the The Press or the Christchurch Star chose to cover any of the events, but is delighted at the turnout. "We've never had something of this scale in Christchurch," he says. "The idea was to do something positive and give people a sense of community which hasn't really existed since pre-homosexual law reform." Some were initially skeptical that Pride Week could be pulled off, but the strong numbers at this year's events on the back of modest publicity has proven it can be done, and organisers hope next year will be even bigger.
Credit: GayNZ.com News Staff
First published: Tuesday, 7th June 2005 - 12:00pm
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