Thousands expected at Foyle Pride parade

Mickey Doherty and his dance troupe make an arresting sight as they passed through Shipquay Gate on their way to Guildhall Square during a previous  Foyle Pride Parade in Derry.
Mickey Doherty and his dance troupe make an arresting sight as they passed through Shipquay Gate on their way to Guildhall Square during a previous Foyle Pride Parade in Derry.

Thousands are expected to turn out this Saturday for the annual Foyle Pride Festival Parade and Fun Day in the city centre.

The march and celebrations will follow a week of events, debates, shows and exhibitions across the city over the past week.

This afternoon (Wednesday) sees the staging of the first ever Foyle Pride Comic-Con at the Playhouse, admission £5.

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender characters in comics, sci-fi and video games will be celebrated at the event.

The event will feature a Credence film screening, TCG tournaments and demos, cosplay competition, comic drawings, video game competitions and prizes.

There will also be a number of events at Bennigan’s bar in the city this evening, including Dr Sketchy’s Anti-Art School were people can draw Pride-themed costume models and win prizes, from 6pm.

Local drag acts at a previous Foyle Pride parade. (Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com.)

Local drag acts at a previous Foyle Pride parade. (Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com.)

The same venue will host Bennigan’s Film Club’s screening of ‘In the Turn’ at 9.30pm, admission £4, followed by the free Let’s Get Quizzical gameshow/ meltdown.

Tomorrow will see a free Sexual Health Clinic open at the Rainbow Project at Orlan House, Strand Road from 5pm to 7.30pm, while the nearby City Hotel will host a free conference entitled ‘We Won’t Wait: The Fight for Marriage Equality’ at 6.30pm. All welcome.

The programme continues on Friday with Football Versus Homophobia at Bishop’s Field in Creggan from 2pm, followed by ‘Lip Sync for Your Drink’ at the Back Bar, Sandino’s, Water Street from 8.30pm.

Saturday’s parade gets under way at 2pm from the Waterside Railway Station at Duke Street, and heading over to Guildhall Square, following the route of the original October 1968 Civil Rights March.

There will be entertainment kicking off at Guildhall Square in the afternoon, with music from Encore Contemporary Choir and Susie-Blue and also featuring Fireworks Dance Group. There will be an outside barbecue at Warehouse Cafe and Sandino’s after the parade, with vegetarian options, and a Family Fun Area at Cafe Soul from 3pm to 6pm, admission £5.

On Saturday night, American DJ Samson will hit the decks at the Glassworks from 8pm, tickets £10.

On Sunday there will be an all-inclusive LGBTQ Inclusive Service with Reverend Chris Hudson and LGBT female choir Northern Lights from 12pm.

At 3pm on Sunday there will be a Post-Pride Recovery barbecue at Cafe Soul with live music and food, admission £3.