Toronto has been named the host city for WorldPride 2014, beating Stockholm for the honour. The announcement was made on Sunday in St. Petersburg, Florida, USA, at the annual InterPride 2009 Conference.
InterPride is the International Association of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Pride Coordinators.
“We are delighted to have been awarded this opportunity to bring the world to Toronto,” said Mark Singh, past co-chair of the organisation and current chair of the WorldPride committee.
“In this exceptionally diverse city, the advent of a festival like this is an opportunity to highlight the acceptance of the queer community by Canadians, and to raise awareness of other countries where queers are still discriminated against.”
WorldPride 2014 aims to promote lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues on an international level through parades, festivals and other cultural activities.
The provisional program for the festival includes an opening ceremony with a parade of nations, an international human rights conference, a wall of remembrance in honour of the 45th anniversary of Stonewall, and an exhibition and networking fair.
A gathering of all Pride Toronto’s former International Grand Marshals will take place, an AIDS Candlelight vigil will be held, and three parades including a Trans March, a Dyke March and Pride Parade. A closing ceremony will be held immediately following the Parade.
Pride Toronto’s 2009 festival drew over a million people in June and reportedly brought an economic benefit to the city of over $100m.
The 2012 WorldPride is set to take place in London, just ahead of the London Olympic Games and during the year-long celebrations of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.