Saturday, July 30, 2016

Former Vancouver Pride Chair Reflects on Parade's Humble Beginnings

(Vancouver, Canada) Alan Herbert, the former city councillor, was the first elected chair of the Vancouver Pride Society board in 1994. Back then, he says, the parade had a meagre budget and only attracted about 5,000 people — a fraction of the hundreds of thousands it's expected to attract this weekend. "We were really trying to make a name and a place for the Pride society," Herbert said. "So when we got the participation of say, the police department or the fire department or the RCMP, that was a major achievement." Around that time, Philip Owen became the first mayor to march in the parade from start to finish. The moment Owen and Herbert shared after finishing the route that day and looking over as the rest of the floats came in is one Herbert says he will never forget. "The music was great, the weather was perfect, there were balloons everywhere and he just looked at me and said, 'Why haven't I been here before," said Herbert. READ MORE