WorldPride 2021 has been planned to take place in neighboring nations and cities Copenhagen, Denmark and Malmo, Sweden this August 12-22. But with the Danish government extending restrictions amid new pandemic outbreaks, the Copenhagen organizers have been forced to make significant changes to their plans.
Most significantly, the WorldPride Parade, planned for Saturday August 21 has been cancelled. It has been replaced by a number of smaller "Protest Walks" that still comply with restrictions. Routes will be announced later.
Performances will also be scaled down. The Pride stage in Copenhagen's main square will be replaced by a viewing area in a local park, where 5,000 seated guests can enjoy concerts live-streamed from an off-site indoor concert venue. Other events will take place in small venues across the city, where up to 500 people will be allowed to gather, and 50 cultural partners will hold events throughout Copenhagen.
Above Copenhagen Pride 2018 Parade from the air
But those numbers are a far cry from the up to a million visitors Copenhagen 2021 had been expecting over the duration of WorldPride and EuroGames,. The organization had previously described the government’s decision on major events as "overly cautious" and complained that it went against the government’s own expert group who advised last month that "all restrictions could be lifted when people above 16 have been offered a vaccine."
“After five years of planning we are of course disappointed to have to make the decision to scale back some of our events," notes executive managing director of Copenhagen 2021, Benjamin Hansen in a written statement. “But the safety of everyone has to be our highest priority, and we have worked with our safety company RF Experience to create a meaningful and safe WorldPride and EuroGames experience for everyone.”
Hansen adds, “Despite scaling back on some plans, we’re pleased that we haven’t had to cancel any of our events entirely.” In particular, he points to the “29 EuroGames sports tournaments, dozens of cultural events, and a Human Rights Forum," which will all take place as scheduled, and which will "create a long-lasting legacy for Copenhagen 2021.”
Copenhagen 2021’s events in Malmö are unaffected by this announcement, which was specific to Denmark. Sweden's government has yet to say conclusively if the WorldPride events in Malmö (some of which have already been moved to alternative venues) can take place as planned.