Large turnouts for first weekend of Pride London – The London Free Press

Londoners were out in full force to celebrate the first weekend of the Pride London Festival.

Rain and shine, the festival had ten events during the weekend, with more to come this week.

Festival president Andrew Rosser was excited about the turnout so far.

“It’s really great to see how many people are coming out to support Pride,” he said.

Events this weekend included the London Middlesex Roller Derby annual Pride bout, a Pride swim, Pride comedy night and the Pride picnic.

Rosser said one of biggest events was Drag Queen Storytime. More than 300 people went to the event at the Central Library on Dundas Street, he said.

Despite the rain Sunday morning, the RBC Run with Pride went ahead for its second year.

“We want to be proud, so we’re out regardless, to celebrate the cause,” said race director Barry Smith.

New this year to the race was a 10-kilometre race and the addition of timing the one-km and five-km races.

“I wanted this to be bigger, better and prouder than last year,” Smith said to racers before the runs began.

This is the 24th annual Pride London Festival, which kicked off July 19 and will end with the Pride parade on Sunday.

There are several new events coming up in the festival lineup, like meet-and-greet gaming event Gaymer Meetup and the Pride Lit Night, a poetry and music event presented by London’s poet laureate, Tom Cull.

Community members have been showing support by putting pride flags in windows and on their buildings. The London Convention Centre changed the colours of their sign on York Street to a rainbow for the ten-day festival.

For more information about the Pride London Festival, pick up a Pride Guide or visit

Gillian Cromwell, of Ingersoll, strikes a pose with her mother, Sharon Whiteside, of Toronto, before they join in the 10-km race at RBC Run with Pride Sunday. (SHANNON COULTER, The London Free Press)


What: Pride London parade

When: July 29 staring at 12:30 p.m.

Where: Parade begins at Western Fair District, travels north on Ontario Street to Queens Avenue, west on Queens Avenue to Wellington Street, north on Wellington Street to Wolfe Street and disperses at Victoria Park, where there will be a festival in the park.

For a map and more info, go to:

Festival highlights

Poet Laureate presents: Pride Lit

Mon. July 23, 7 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

Aeolian Hall, 795 Dundas St. E.


Gaymer Meetup

Tues. July 24, 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Central Library second floor, 251 Dundas St.


Cameo all-ages Pride edition

Wed. July 25, 9 p.m.

Lavish Nightclub, 238 Dundas St.

Check site for more info

A Pride Celebration — Pride Men’s Chorus London

Thurs. July 26, 8 p.m.

Aeolian Hall, 795 Dundas St. E.

$25 in advance, $30 at the door

Mz Affra-Tighty’s Elegant Ensemble

Fri. July 27, 9 p.m. – 11 p.m.

Fanshawe Entertainment Stage, Victoria Park

Free, tips appreciated

Coming Out in the Park, all ages event

Sat. July 28, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m.

Fanshawe Entertainment Stage, Victoria Park

Free, donations accepted

24th annual London Pride parade

Sun. July 29, 12:30 p.m.

Queens Avenue, ends in Victoria Park

Details on website