The Victoria Pride Festival is back! From July-10, 2016, Victoria will celebrate its LGBTQ community with a series of events and activities that show appreciation, love and support for our diverse community. Here's how you can get in on the action. 

Party and play  

This year's festival features free, all-ages events such as the Big Gay Dog Walk (July 3) and the Memorial Drag Ball Game (July 1), as well as several parties and evening events like the RUFF Victoria Pride Party and the Sunset Harbour Boat Cruise

Learn and explore 

In a free workshop, Talking with Your Family about Gender & Sexuality (June 30), parents and youth will have the opportunity to discuss and explore gender and sexual diversity in an open, safe and inclusive environment.  

This year, the VPF will be presenting Pride CHURCH, a special event in which Reverend Patrick Sibley will explain why he remains in the Church (July 4), as well as a Holy Communion for Pride service (July 5) at Christ Church Cathedral. All are welcome. 

Celebrate the arts 

There will also be two LGBTQ-friendly dance workshops with transgender choreographer Sean Dorsey. He'll be teaching both a beginner workshop and a masterclass for dancers with all levels of experience (both on July 9). He will also be performing his original production, The Missing Generation (July 8), which endeavours to give voice to long time surviviors of the early AIDS epidemic through dance, storytelling and theatre. 

Intrepid Theatre will be hosting several VPF events once again this year, including Such a Heart as Yours: A Queer Midsummer Remix (July 7). If you're into "Shakespeare mocking, liberal misquoting and general merrymaking and tomfoolery," then this event is for you.

There will also be a special literary event held at Intrepid Theatre (July 9). Pride in the Word showcases some of the proudest and most talented writers from Victoria and across the country. 

Show your pride

To top it all off, the annual Victoria Pride Parade will take place on July 10, bringing thousands of spectators and performers to the heart of Victoria to show off our pride in the largest LGBTQ event of the year. 

Plan your trip 

Ready to plan your trip to Victoria? Visit our LGBTQ travel page for more information including a list of LGBTQ TAG approved accommodation. You can also check out Clipper Vacations' Victoria Pride Guide for more great recommendations of things to see and do while you're in Victoria during the Pride Festival.  

Visit the Victoria Pride Society website for more information on the festival and how you can get involved. 

All photos in this blog post used courtesy of the Victoria Pride Society.