Muskoka Pride has announced that July 14 through 24 is the 2022 Muskoka Pride Week. The annual week of activities celebrates the Muskoka lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) community.
This year’s Pride celebration is a return to pre-pandemic events, including the first festival and parade since 2019, explains Muskoka Pride President Merv Taylor-Morin. “For the past two years we have continued to celebrate Pride Week in smaller ways, following the COVID restrictions in place at the time. We are beyond thrilled to once again host the annual Festival and Parade in downtown Bracebridge this year.”
Muskoka Pride board member Shawn Forth explains, “It is so important for members of the LGBTQ+ community to see themselves represented in the greater community. When you identify as LGBTQ+ and grow up in a small community, you can feel isolated and as if you are the only one. It is important for there to be LGBTQ+ visibility in our communities.”
Forth explains that just last month, Muskoka Pride donated rainbow benches to all municipalities in Muskoka to help to ensure a year-round visible symbol of the commitment to diverse and inclusive communities. The funding was provided through the District of Muskoka’s Community Enhancement grant.
Muskoka Pride Week will feature in-person events throughout Muskoka over eleven days.
Pride Week starts off with the theatrical production Twelfth Night by Timberbeast
Productions on Thursday, July 14 at the Gravenhurst Wharf gazebo.
The party starts on Friday, July 15 with Disco Muskoka. In partnership with the Huntsville
Theatre Company, Muskoka Pride is hosting a disco party at Canvas Brewery in Huntsville. Tickets are available on the HTC website.
Pride Church Services will be held on July 17 at Trinity United Church in Gravenhurst and on July 24 at Bracebridge United Church.
On Thursday, July 21, Bracebridge Hall will host MQFF After Dark, a film screening for 19+ which features films from this year’s Muskoka Queer Film Festival that could not be broadcast due to content. Tickets are available on the Muskoka Pride website or pay at the door.
All municipalities in Muskoka will be raising the Progress Pride flag on Monday, July 19. Members of the public are encouraged to join us for ceremonies at their local municipality office to celebrate the annual flag raising.
Muskoka Drag Royalty is holding four events this year – including Drag Trivia at Bracebridge Barrelhouse on July 18, a 19+ show at Sawdust City Brewery on July 22, and two all-ages shows on July 20 and July 24.
Muskoka Pride has taken great care to ensure that many events are geared to the entire family. Many families participate to show their allyship with the community, to support their LGBTQ+ family members, and as an opportunity for their families to experience their first Pride Festival.
The annual Six Mile Lake boat parade will take place on Saturday, July 16 on Six Mile Lake in Georgian Bay Township starting at 1 p.m.
The annual Rainbow Road Tour on Sunday, July 17, which was first introduced during the
pandemic, will take place again. It is a great opportunity for the entire family to tour around Lake Muskoka. This year’s route will incorporate some of the newly installed rainbow benches and will end with a BBQ and musical performance at Muskoka Brewery.
Tuesday, July 19 is Pride Night at the Muskoka Drive-In. Featuring three short films from the Muskoka Queer Film Festival (MQFF) and the feature film “Dawn, Her Dad, and the Tractor” tickets are available on the Muskoka Pride website or pay cash at the gate.
On Thursday, July 21, the 10th annual Muskoka Pride Mini-Golf Tournament will be held at
Northern Escapades Mini Putt. Families and individuals can golf for a special rate between
11 a.m. and 6 p.m., and try for their chance at the trophy.
Two Drag Shows are planned which are aimed at all-ages – Wednesday, July 20 a Driveway Drag Show is planned at a private residence in Bracebridge, and the Memorial Park Drag Show is planned as part of the annual Pride Festival on Sunday, July 24. Both shows feature many local performers from Muskoka Drag Royalty.
Muskoka Bay Resort is hosting a Pride Pool Party on Saturday, July 23 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. It will feature live music, games, prizes, and food. Admission is free. Please contact the resort to add your name to the guest list.
FESTIVAL AND PARADE
For the first time since 2019, Muskoka Pride will host the annual Pride Festival in Memorial
Park on Sunday, July 24 form 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Featuring vendors, live music, and activities for the family. The band Dirty Little Swing Thing will be performing under the bandshell, and local singer Briar Summers will be performing on a second stage. Muskoka Drag Royalty will be hosting a drag show starting at 2:30.
The annual Pride Parade will take place at 12:30 p.m. on Manitoba Street. This year, the parade will be starting at Memorial Park and going through downtown Bracebridge.
Everyone, no matter how you identify, is welcome to attend Muskoka Pride events.
Muskoka Pride receives funding from the Government of Canada through the Local Festivals – Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage grant.