When the nation’s capital does Pride, the unofficial motto is “bigger and brighter is better.” Whether you’re into celebrating the LGBTQ community at a chic dance party or at the famous Capital Pride Pageant—featuring Ottawa’s most talented drag performers—we’ve got you set for action with our round-up of the best Pride events in Ottawa.
When: August 20–26
The low-down: Pride in the nation’s capital is unlike any other event. Each year, the parade keeps getting bigger and more colourful, so paint yourself in rainbow body paint, make a colourful sign and hit the streets of downtown Ottawa for the celebration of the year.
When: August 26
Find it: Starts at Gladstone and Bank St., goes down Kent St. and ends at Bank and Somerset St., ottawacapitalpride.ca
Human Rights Vigil
The low-down: Fighting for equality is never an easy feat—reflect with the LGBTQ community about the struggles and injustices faced on a daily basis.
When: August 21 from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Find it: Canadian Tribute to Human Rights, 220 Elgin St., ottawacapitalpride.ca
TD Block Party
The low-down: Would it truly be Pride if there weren’t a dance party thrown into the mix? Bring your crew to this bumping outdoor party where you can meet new people, drink the night away and dance along to live performances.
When: August 22 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Find it: Aberdeen Square, Lansdowne Park, ottawacapitalpride.ca
Capital Pride Pageant
The low-down: Mark your calendars for Ottawa’s annual drag pageant to witness the crowning of Mr., Mrs. and Mx. Capital Pride—the popular karaoke drag queen China Doll is one of the judges.
When: August 23 from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Fees: $20 to $70 per person
Find it: Delta City Centre Hotel, 101 Lyon St. N, ottawacapitalpride.ca
Bank Street Fair
Take a stroll down Bank St. once the parade finishes and learn more about the local organizations and businesses that support Ottawa’s LGBTQ community. Plus, pop into one of the bars or restos for a midday refuel.
When: August 26 from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Find it: Bank St. (between Somerset St. and Florence St.), ottawacapitalpride.ca