Between February 20th and March 6th, Sydney is once more set to come alive in celebration of its LBGT communities. Sydney’s Mardi Gras festivities are world renowned for the flamboyant, hilarious and outrageous parties, costumes and activities that the city’s gay and straight communities participate in. Sydney has long embraced its LGBT populations, and the Mardi Gras festivities attracts tourists from all around Australia and overseas. From fairs, to parties to film festivals and the culmination of the revelry with the Mardi Gras parade it’s certainly an occasion not to be missed.
If you’re visiting Sydney for this celebration or will be here over the Mardi Gras celebrations, get involved in the annual shenanigans for a good time – whether you’re LGBT or not!
Here’s a rundown of some of the events to look forward to between February 19th and March 6th.
Drag Races. Whether you compete or just watch the hilarious spectacle, visitors to Sydney will see the world famous Bondi Beach from a different perspective, as drag queens compete for the titles in events such as the handbag discus and high heeled beach sprints. The games are to be held on Friday March 4th.
Fair Day. To mark the beginning of festivities, Mardi Gras revellers come together in Victoria Park on Sunday February 20th for some food, shopping and entertainment. In true Mardi Gras style, the it’s not exactly your run-of-the-mill fair. Go along to watch a tug-of-war between gay men and lesbians, or the annual dog show showcasing some of Sydney’s most pedicured pooches!
Parade. Mardi Gras celebrations culminate in the flamboyant parade on Saturday, the 6th of March. The brash and bold parade makes its way down Oxford and Flinders Street. Cheering crowds come to show their support and marvel, laugh and enjoy the serious to outrageous floats carrying Sydney’s LGBT communities. In 2011, the parade theme is “Say Something!” – go along to join in the conversation! You’ll be a stone’s throw from the parade’s course from a Paddington hotel.
Party. After the parade, Sydney’s entertainment quarter throws the official after party, with visiting DJs and musicians and enough space for the whole LGBT – and more – to shimmy and dance the night away!
Throughout the celebrations, there are also theatre productions, film festivals music events and gallery exhibitions in the Mardi Gras theme. It’s a great opportunity to get a dose of Sydney’s alternative art and culture scene. If you’re in Sydney for the celebrations, make sure you stay close to the action. A Surry Hills hotel will place you close to the parade route. A Paddington or Darlinghurst hotel will also keep you at the centre of all the festivities.