Wow. Just….Wow. 12,500 marchers. 208 floats. 500,000 spectators. 900 police officers (on duty; others were in the parade!). The parade last night was a wild time! People around us were from various places in Australia and from around the world. Sydney was celebrating its 45th annual Pride celebration, and advertising was promoting the events as LGBTQIA+.
Since we returned to Sydney a few days ago, we noticed rainbow striping on crosswalks and in many shop windows, thinking only that it was because February is Gay Pride Month. (We have since discovered that so are June and October!) Then we started to hear about a big Mardi Gras/Pride parade on Saturday night. When we researched it, we only then found out that Sydney was hosting WorldPride, which initially occurred in Rome in 2000. (Pope John Paul II was NOT pleased, however!)
Yes, we know – purists are saying, “Mardi Gras was last Tuesday!” Get over it. Combining two highly decorated, costumed, and glittery events made it all the more fun. No Mardi Gras beads were thrown, though – just confetti. And there were fireworks at the end of the parade. Walking around several hours prior to the parade start, we met and saw all sorts of people in costume. All were friendly, smiling, and happy. The mood of the parade was very happy! It was a fun time. The photos (and one video) below prove it!
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