Montreal Pride announces physically distant summer festival

Just two days after the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, Montreal Pride Festival organizers announced that adapted versions of their events will take place in August despite summer event cancellations across the city. 

Montréal Pride Festival 2020: 360 Edition, from August 10 to 16! https://t.co/E6F75JKccW via @fiertemtlpride

— Fierté MTL Pride (@FierteMTLPride) May 19, 2020

Instead of taking to the streets, the festival’s activities – which aim to celebrate as well as to demand better rights for the LGBTQI+ community – will take place entirely from a distance. The "360 Edition" will be held from Aug. 10 to 16, and "promises to be a highly creative presentation combining multiple different channels of communication," according to the organization’s press release. 

"We’re still working on the program," said Fierté Montréal communications director François Laberge. "But we are not going to organize any gatherings or any physical activities. We're working to have a program that will be able to respect the social distancing that we all have to live with right now."

A detailed announcement will be made next month, but the idea is to allow festivalgoers to participate in online events and activities leading up to and during the week of Aug. 10. 

"Of course, we’ll have some surprises that we’ll be keeping for ourselves," Laberge said. 

Organizers say events like pride should live on despite the health crisis, as they are more than just a social event. 

"Pride has been a movement that was born in the hearts of the people, not only as a social gathering," Laberge said. 

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