New Direction for Orlando's Come Out With Pride
By Nicholas Cimarusti
While most Pride festivals devolve into a wild display of hormones and feather boas, this October's Come Out With Pride even in Orlando, Fla., aims to be different.
In the past, this LGBT event has been just as fabulous as any other Pride parade. The entire first week of October is reserved for Come Out With Pride festivities, ending in a parade centered around downtown Orlando's Lake Eola Park. Instead of focusing on the typical excess associated with a Pride parade, Come Out With Pride executive director and senior executive producer Mikael Frank Audebert tells Orlando Weekly the October event will be put on a leash — still leather, of course.
With the recent advances in civil equality and the cultural spotlight on the LGBT community, Audebert acknowledges that this year's festival has a new responsibility. Regarding the event's new image, Audebert says, "Let's face it, our community is so diverse. The job of a Pride celebration is to put a celebration out there that's for everyone."
As part of the new focus on inclusion, even Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs, formerly a political figure against LGBT rights, will be part of the Oct. 5 culmination. Jacobs's participation in Come Out With Pride might even herald a new era for Pride festivals, in which they become not only celebrations of LGBT pride but beacons of community pride.
Get more info on Orlando and its annual LGBT festivities here.