A busy Pride Month has come to a close in Central Alberta.
During the month of June, the Red Deer Queer Community Association hosted several events to celebrate Pride Month, including a Pride Car Parade, Queer Prom, and a pair of panels on the importance of Pride and queer history.
“I’m really happy to see the turnout that we saw and I’m happy we are able to engage with the community the way we are,” said Alex Pugatschew, RDQCA vice-chairperson.
“It’s always fantastic to see that we’re interacting with our community … and seeing the different ages of individuals come out.”
Pugatschew said the Pride Car Parade After Party was a great example of people coming together to celebrate who they are.
“Seeing the range of people that came to the After Party enjoying and being able to be themselves, it’s always so heartwarming,” Pugatschew said.
“It gives reason to what we were doing in the first place. It reminds me and it reminds all of us why we are doing what we’re doing: to provide the queer community and the 2SLGBTQIA+ individuals in the city with a space to be themselves.”
Pugatschew said it’s hard to compare this year’s Pride celebration with the past two years because those years were impacted by COVID-19 restrictions.
“Virtual events are always a little trickier because there are a lot of people coming and going, and it is a much wider base of individuals to pull from,” said Pugatschew.
“For next year we’re going to try to do our best to have a combination of (virtual and in-person events). I think this year we were just much more excited to even have the option to have in-person events.”
Pugatschew said it’s important to keep the conversation going beyond Pride Month, adding the Central Alberta Pride Society and Trans and Non-Binary Aid Society will be hosting events in August. CAPS currently has its Over the Rainbow Drag Show scheduled for Aug. 13 at the Cambridge Red Deer Hotel and Conference Centre.
For more information on the Red Deer Queer Community Association, visit www.rdqca.org.