Pride Week kicks off in Red Deer on Friday

  • Aug. 12, 2015 3:08 p.m.

Pride Week begins in Red Deer this Friday with a number of events scheduled throughout the weekend.

This year’s events aim to address some of those challenges, including the adversity gay senior citizens experience, particularly after retirement and in retirement communities.

“Lots of LGBTQ people will come out in their middle years only to have to go back into the closet when they enter a retirement home,” said Tony Jeglum, Central Alberta Pride community board member. “There’s not that experience and openness in many retirement communities.

“It’s something we are seeing a lot of movement on but it’s also something we didn’t address a couple of years ago but we are starting to see the issue become more forefront.”

Jeglum said he and the board were thrilled to have the Golden Circle Senior Resource Centre joining in for this year’s Pride activities. The Golden Circle will be hosting a Rainbow Tea on Aug. 18th from 1:30-3:30 p.m. with tea, snacks, and a performance by The Laddies of La Cage.

“I never thought I would live to see the day drag queens would perform at the Golden Circle at three in the afternoon on a Tuesday, but thanks to the Executive Director at the Golden Circle, Monica Morrison, they’ve asked to join us and we welcomed them with open arms.”

While senior citizens still struggle to gain acceptance from their peers, Jeglum said the opposite seems to be true of the younger generation.

“One of the best things about the last 40 years and the advancements the LGBTQ community have made is that people are becoming more comfortable with the idea of coming out and with accepting their sexuality at much younger ages,” explained Jeglum. “Once upon a time a teenage may have known he or she was gay, but they didn’t act on it – they would never tell their parents or God forbid the other kids.

“But now it’s not uncommon for teenagers to identify as gay at an early age and to actually be quite vocal about it.”

Another place Jeglum said the battle for equality has not yet been won is in rural outlying communities, adding it is easy to live in Red Deer without anyone bothering you for the way you live your life.

“In small town rural Alberta, outside of the cities – there is still a rhetoric around the LGBTQ idea and people seem to forget that gay people are just normal people going about their daily lives.”

Jeglum also added the trans community has not received the same acceptance and equality over the last 40 years, however in the wake of international media coverage of various transgender individuals, great strides are being made for the transgender community’s journey to societal acceptance.

Central Alberta Pride Week will kick off Friday at City Hall Park with a mayoral proclamation from Mayor Tara Veer, followed by a dinner at Tandoor ‘n’ Flame at 6 p.m., then a Night of Comedy at the Scott Block Theatre with shows at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.

On Saturday, attendees are invited to join in a ‘fruit float’, which will include a river float from Fort Normandeau to Mckenzie Trails at 11 a.m.

Later in the evening the drag kings and queens will take to the stage at the Legion for ‘Drag the Night Away’ starting at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15 at the door.

Other notable events include a Sunday service at Gaetz Memorial United Church at 10:30 a.m. as well as the Rainbow Tea on Tuesday and a ‘Pride @ the Beach’ day on Aug. 21st inviting members of the LGBTQ+ community to join along in Sylvan Lake beginning at 7 p.m.

jswan@reddeeerexpress.com

Just Posted

Vehicle thefts in Red Deer on the rise

Over 1,000 vehicles stolen in the span of a few months

WATCH: Red Deer 9-1-1 dispatcher thanked for birth assistance

Stearns family appreciative to Holly Shrader for helping deliver baby

Superintendent Ken Foster sees progress in city policing

Red Deer RCMP Superintendent has been on the job for a year and has seen success

Klaus testifies he falsely confessed to triple-homicide in Mr. Big sting

Klaus said confessions were made in order to further position within criminal organization

Red Deer River Naturalists host guest speaker

Bradley Peter will talk about new methods of lake monitoring

WATCH: Red Deerians come together to ‘light the night’

Traditional Red Deer Lights the Night sees thousands

BC RCMP hunt for white SUV that rammed cruiser

Kamloops RCMP are looking for a white SUV headed north on the Yellowhead Highway

Canadian screen stars want ‘action’ from industry meeting on sexual misconduct

‘Of course there’s been sexual harassment here. Absolutely. No question.’

Opioid prescriptions up across Canada: report

The report shows the number of opioid prescriptions rose by almost seven per cent, while daily doses on average dropped

Russian meddling has implications for Canada

Kosovo president Hashim Thaci warns that Russian meddling has implications for Canada

Health Canada hints at government’s plans for legal pot

Health warnings, plain covers for pot packs under proposed regulations

Washington governor tells BC don’t be ‘daunted’ by Trump

“I want to assure this assembly that no matter who is in the White House, it won’t affect Washington state’s relationship with Canada or British Columbia.”

Feds plan to spend billions on housing strategy

However much of the $15.9 billion will not be spent until after the next election in 2019

David Cassidy, teen idol and ‘Partridge Family’ star, dies at 67

Cassidy announced earlier this year he had been diagnosed with dementia

Most Read