More than 100 Deltans came together on Saturday afternoon to celebrate Pride in their own backyard.
Delta’s inaugural Pride Picnic, organized by four community members and run by volunteers and donations, saw the LGBTQ community and their allies come out to Ladner’s Memorial Park on Aug. 4 to celebrate inclusion in a family-friendly setting.
“It’s been amazing. It’s been way more than I was expecting,” said Kutrina Mosch, one of the organizers for the event. Mosch came up with the idea for Delta’s first ever Pride event after finding none in her neighbourhood, then started the grassroots movement to create one.
“So many people have stepped up to support this event,” she continued, “and putting this event together in four weeks, and what this turnout has been, is just amazing.
“I don’t think you could have asked for anything better.”
The goal, Mosch told the North Delta Reporter before the picnic, was to create a family-friendly event where people could feel comfortable visiting with friends and neighbours.
That’s exactly what the picnic seemed to accomplish.
Attendees decorated cookies with rainbow icing, created colourful canvases with glitter glue and stickers, and had their faces painted. They also had the opportunity to win prizes through a series of games including a water balloon toss, a “drag race” (adults had to race from a pile of shoes, wigs, bras and dresses to arrive at the finish line first, but also in style), and a version of the egg-and-spoon race which used glittery wands and sparkly balls.
For Pamela Hathaway and her wife Lucie Ferrari, the Pride Picnic was a chance for them to celebrate pride with their daughter.
“We just thought it was a fun celebration, and fun to do a pride event in Ladner where we live,” Hathaway said. “And it’s important for our daughter to grow up in an inclusive community, which we think Ladner is. So it’s fun to celebrate that.”
The idea of Delta being a place of inclusivity was echoed by several speakers at the event.
Tru Wilson, a teenage trans advocate from Ladner whose efforts pushed the Vancouver Catholic school board to introduce a policy to support gender expression in 2014, spoke about the importance of community coming together to support each other.
“It’s important to hold events like these to show that we support everybody,” she said during her speech. “That we support kids like me. Because you would not believe the impact it has on us … to feel accepted, and to feel welcomed.
“Let’s continue to show our pride, show that we love and accept not just everybody in the LGBTQ community, but everyone here in Ladner.”
Attendees, standing under the gazebo listening to her, cheered.