Vancouver Pride Weekend 2012: Genderfest, Trans March, Dyke March, and more

With Pride Week in full swing, it's easy to get overwhelmed by the never-ending cornucopia of parties, events, gatherings, and assorted whatnots.

If you're an ally, someone new to the city, a tourist, or just trying to figure out what to go to, here's a quick rundown of some of the main festivals or parades that are happening this weekend.

Genderfest

This festival, which began on July 30 and runs until Sunday (August 5), is an alternative or complement to Vancouver's Pride Week festivities.

Genderfest helps to create safe and celebratory spaces for anyone who lives outside the binary divisions of male and female or gay and straight.

There's still lots of fun to partake in, including the sTeam: All Genders Bathhouse tonight (August 2, 8 p.m. to 1 a.m., M2M Vancouver [1210 Granville Street]) and the Unicorn Born! dance party on Sunday (August 5) at the Maritime Labour Centre (1880 Triumph Street).

For full details, please visit the Genderfest website.

Trans and Genderqueer March

The third consecutive (though not third ever) Trans and Genderqueer March will take place on Friday (August 3).

According to a statement on their Facebook page, the political protest is "a platform for expression of outrage and dissatisfaction with the ongoing policing, exclusion, erasure and oppression of trans and gender non-conforming people by various social, legal and community institutions ".

Trans and genderqueer people, and their allies, will gather at Nelson Park (at Nelson and Thurlow Streets) at 5 p.m., and march at 6 p.m. to Emery Barnes Park (at Davie and Seymour Streets).

For more information, visit their Facebook page.

Vancouver Dyke March and Festival

The ninth annual Vancouver Dyke March and Festival is heading back to Grandview Park this year.

The gathering for the march begins at 11:30 a.m. at McSpadden Park ( Victoria Drive at East 5th Avenue ). The march will head down Commercial Drive and end at Grandview Park, where a family-friendly musical festival will take place.

Entertainers at the festival will include Sugarbeach, Screaming Queens, Calgary's Fake Moustache Drag King Troupe, Hot Panda, and more. And to round things out, there'll be food vendors, a beer garden, community booths, and a children's area.

The march is for all queer women, but it's open to allies too.

Former city councillor Ellen Woodsworth said at the launch of Pride Week at Vancouver City Hall that she hopes to see more men coming out to support the event.

Foreskin Pride March

The first annual Foreskin Pride March also takes place on Saturday (August 4). It's a celebration of foreskin and a protest against the genital mutilation of children.

The day's events begin with a protest at a private clinic (805 West Broadway) at noon, a demonstration at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of B.C. (1:30 p.m., 669 Howe Street), and a rally at the Vancouver Art Gallery (Robson and Hornby).

They will also be marching in the Vancouver Pride Parade on Sunday (see below) and have a booth at the Pride Festival.

For full details, visit their Facebook page or website.

Vancouver Pride Parade

And after all that, if you're still in need of something to feel proud about, there's a little event called the 34th annual Vancouver Pride Parade that takes place on Sunday (August 5). It begins at noon and ends around 3 p.m.

Here's a link to a map of the parade route, which runs along Robson and Denman Streets, and Beach Avenue.

It ends at Sunset Beach, where the Pride Festival, which will include live music, vendors and booths, and a beer garden, will take place.

And more in store...

But hey, if that's still not enough (for all you insatiable types), there are plenty of other Pride parades and events coming up across B.C. and the Lower Mainland, including Okanagan Pride (August 12 to 19), New West Pride Week (August 16 to 19), Salt Spring Pride (September 7 to 9), and Bisexual Pride Day (date to be determined, presented by Qmunity).

Happy pride, everyone!

You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at twitter.com/cinecraig. You can also follow the Georgia Straight's LGBT coverage on Twitter at twitter.com/StraightLGBT.

See also

Vancouver Pride Week brings communities together

Special coverage

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