Vancouver Pride Week celebrations kicked off this Friday with the Davie Street Block Party

We arrived early at the Davie Street Block Party, easily finding an open bike rack on Davie Street at the Burrard end of the party, which stretched three city blocks to Jervis. Pride week in Vancouver was just starting and it was spacious in the streets as people arrived to celebrate. The beer tents, which later saw long lineups, had just begun to serve alcohol, it was great to see that people could purchase a drink and walk the blocks of party, rather than be corralled into a stagnant beer garden. But it was still happy hour! So we got a window seat at La Brasserie and people watched as the streets filled with character.

Costumes began to appear. A man dressed in a Don Cherry-esque suit splattered with Batman logos, wore giant glittery sunglasses and a fruit hat made of yellow lemons and golf balls. He posed for pictures everywhere he turned.

Two older men wearing make-up, jewelry and headdress, strutted, arm in arm, in 1920s style swimsuits, a pair of flapper girls smoking Cruella De Vil cigarettes.

A group of chiseled bodies in leather boxers drew large crowds as they paraded the streets wearing dog masks, some on their hands and knees in leash and collar, shaking their latex tails with excited obedience.

Halloween in August.

Music had started playing at both of the stages between Burrard and Jervis. We walked the circus, absorbing the scene, sponges in the summer sun.

A group of women danced Zumba and everyone was smiling as they popped to the beat. Rainbows were everywhere! Smiles everywhere! The performance transitioned to a crowd-pleasing DJ playing a Queen’s dream-version of Whitney Houston’s How Will I Know. The track had boys and girls singing and dancing, while cell phones and cameras captured the youth and joy of the moment. We danced and grooved, full of energy, Positive and Powerful.

A feeling of freedom and acceptance filled the streets.

For a full listing of Vancouver Pride Week Events visit VancouverPride.ca.

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