The biggest weekend of the Pride season is just around the corner and the sunny summer weather means there will be plenty of outdoor parties. There are several major events taking place this weekend, so event attendees and commuters may want to plan ahead.
Here’s what Vancouverites can expect during Pride weekend celebrations and road closures.
The annual Pride Parade taking place on July 31 will be a sight to behold, and perhaps a sight to behold to steer clear of if you are driving due to several road closures.
This year’s route starts at Robson and Jervis streets, exits Robson and heads into Denman toward Davie Village before ending at Sunset Beach.
The celebratory march will begin at 12 noon and Dykes on Bikes will ride the route ten minutes before to signal that the parade is about to begin. The parade will continue until 3 p.m
Roads that will be closed for the parade, including the route and stands, are:
- Between 07:00 and 15:30
- Robson Street between Jervis and Burrard Streets
- Alberni Street between Bute and Burrard streets
- Thurlow Street between West Georgia and Nelson Streets
- Bute Street between Alberni and Haro . streets
- Jervis Street between Eihu Lane and Rosemary Brown Lane
- Between 8am and 4pm – Robson Street between Jervis and Denman Street
- Between 8:30 AM and 4:00 PM – Denman Street between Robson Street and Beach Avenue
- Between 9am and 4pm – Beach Avenue between Denman and Jervis streets
- Between 9:30 AM and 4:30 PM – Pacific Street and Beach Avenue between Jervis and Thurlow Street
There is no on-street parking along the 6am-4pm parade route and commuters wishing to access the West End are asked to use alternate routes along West Georgia, Burrard and Davie Street.
Pride Parade: What to Expect?
Along with parade hosts, including Kendall Gender, Conni Smudge and Joan-E, who will be scattered along the route, the Toonie Brigade will also march along the route with a giant rainbow flag that people can throw tonies into. The change collected will go to the Vancouver Pride Society.
Sunset Beach Festival
Between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM, roads near Sunset Beach will be subject to changes in traffic flow.
Along Pacific Street and Beach Avenue between Jervis and Thurlow streets, setting up and tearing down will affect local traffic.
- 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
- Local residents can still access their homes along Beach Avenue, but must turn right onto Pacific Street to exit the area
- 12:30-15:30 o’clock
- Residents leaving their homes by car must turn left onto Beach Avenue and cannot return until the parade is complete
- 3.30 pm and beyond
- Local residents can enter and exit their homes along Beach Avenue, but must continue to turn right onto Pacific Street until 4:30 PM to exit
Sunset Beach Festival: What to Expect
On the same day as the Pride parade, Sunset Beach comes alive with drag, music, snacks and a craft market. There will be three stages: the Community Stage, curated by RiceCake, the TD Main Stage, curated by Hotlatch, and the Stoli Stage, curated by Normie Corp. The Beer Garden is free and donated, but is only for 19-year-olds and older.
The Pride weekend kicks off with the Pride Takeover in Gastown, taking place on Thursday (July 28) evening from 5pm-8pm
With a main stage in Maple Tree Square, musicians march down Water Street and Cordova Street, then up Abbott Street to complete the route along Carrall Street.
Pride Takeover: What to Expect?
There will be live music, dance and storytelling throughout the neighborhood. The acquisition hub is located in Maple Tree Square, where The DIVA Show will host a live performance.
East Van Horns will also be marching and playing instruments all over Gastown, filling the streets with brass players using a trumpet, trombone, tuba and more. In total there will be six musicians.
There are plenty of other events that take place over the weekend, most of which take place indoors. In fact, there are so many to attend that we’ve compiled a mega list of Pride events (and update it weekly).