The Hero Trust is no longer strong enough to organise Auckland's 2009 LGBT Festival, so a collection of concerned LGBT community stalwarts have now come forward to give the city a 'Pride Festival' this February. Auckland's 2009 Pride Festival: The Big Gay Out is confirmed - and the rest is a work in progress GayNZ.com revealed last week that the Hero Trust Board now only involves two active trustees, and the Hero Brand Management Group has disbanded. Yesterday a new entity called Pride Festival Auckland '09 agreed to take up the reigns to ensure the city still has an LGBT Festival for February. "Auckland's Hero Festival has been given a reprieve by an independent group," confirms Hero Board member Mike Binis. "Due to attrition over the last eight months, rather than any single cause for mass exodus, not enough volunteers had come forward to drive the next festival," he explains. "With Hero now down to just two volunteers, Pride Festival Auckland '09, with the support of Hero, will allow the Trust to concentrate on its future sustainability." The new Pride Festival team is made up of a handful of LGBT community coordinators – including Richard James of the Gay Auckland Business Association, and Lionel Vongue, formally of the now-defunct Hero Brand Management Group, is back on board to schedule events. Some traditional Hero Festival events, such as the Big Gay Out and others which are run independently, are scheduled to run as usual under the Pride '09 Festival. GayNZ.com understands the new Festival team is not ruling out the possibility of a Hero Party for February, and is working quickly to form a vibrant and diverse calendar of events which will be confirmed in coming days.
Credit: GayNZ.com Daily News Staff
First published: Wednesday, 3rd December 2008 - 10:07am
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