‘It will definitely be the biggest, proudest Pride parade Cobourg has yet to see’

Northumberland Pride gears up for busy Pride Month in June, hosting various activities for all ages

Northumberland Pride is gearing up for a busy June, which is Pride Month, with various events in Northumberland County including Cobourg and Port Hope. (Photo courtesy of Northumberland Pride)
Northumberland Pride is gearing up for a busy June, which is Pride Month, with various events in Northumberland County including Cobourg and Port Hope. (Photo courtesy of Northumberland Pride)

With a presence during the upcoming Cobourg sidewalk festival and a 1980s-themed prom night on the bill, Northumberland Pride is gearing up for a colourful and busy June, with several activities to mark Pride Month.

The new organization is hoping for a successful series of events, and is already impressed by the embrace it has received from the Cobourg and Port Hope communities.

“The most exciting, and the most important, part of this year’s Pride events in Northumberland has been the overwhelming community engagement and support we have received as a new, local not-for-profit looking to bring community engagement on LGBT2QIA+ issues and programming,” Jason Schmidt, chair of the board for Northumberland Pride, told kawarthaNOW.

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“In 2024, we have received a community grant from the (Municipality) of Port Hope and sponsorships of various forms from over 30 local businesses,” Schmidt said. “Further, we have partnered with the Capitol Theatre in Port Hope, the Cobourg DBIA, The Mill Restaurant, Cultivate, Critical Mass: A Centre for Contemporary Art, and Sounds of the Next Generation to plan this year’s events.”

Schmidt said 2024 has already been an exciting year for Northumberland Pride. For example, in February, the group partnered with the Hibernate Festival to bring Shania Twink to the Ganaraska Brewing Company in Port Hope. In April, Northumberland Pride teamed up with the Capitol Theatre for an evening of music and discussion with Lucas Silveira.

The entertainment picks up again in June with “an exciting line-up of events for all ages to celebrate,” Schmidt said.

During June, Northumberland Pride will be hosting the following events:

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Saturday, June 1

Northumberland Pride is partnering with the Cobourg DBIA to hold its third annual day time family Pride event within the Cobourg King Street Pride Sidewalk Festival with games, bouncy castles, treats, face painting, a photobooth, and other activities.

As part of the Downtown Cobourg Pride Festival, Northumberland Pride and the DBIA are organizing a Pride parade at 11 a.m. The parade route begins at the Cobourg Police Station on King Street West and ends at Victoria Park on Division Street.

Also, as part of the Downtown Cobourg Pride Festival, there will be a Northumberland Pride stage, sponsored by Dr. Kate Everdell, Cultivate, Furby Books in Port Hope and Let’s Talk Books in Cobourg. It will feature musical performances by Lady Bird and Melissa Payne, drag performances by Oliver Klozoff, Babe Kelly, Sanjina, and Rocker Klozoff, drag story time and a DJ.


Thursday, June 6

Northumberland Pride is once again teaming up with the Capitol Theatre for Pride at the Capitol, hosted by Juice Boxx from Canada’s Drag Race. Tickets are available at capitoltheatre.com/events/pride-at-the-capitol/.

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Friday, June 7

Northumberland Pride hosts “Back to the ’80s Pride Prom”, an adult, costume-encouraged social event in partnership with The Mill Restaurant in Cobourg. The party features drag performances, prizes, specialty cocktails and more. Tickets are $45 and available at eventbrite.com/e/895610905327.


Saturday, June 8

Northumberland Pride is partnering with local youth, the Capitol Theatre, Sounds of the Next Generation, and Critical Mass to host Cirque De Slay, a circus-themed youth evening Pride event by, and for, local youth between the ages of 13 and 25. Tickets are available at capitoltheatre.com/events/northumberland-pride-presents-cirque-de-slay-youth-pride.

Also as a part of the Cirque De Slay event, there will be a drag 101 workshop for youth between 11 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., sponsored by Shoppers Drug Mart in Cobourg. To register for the workshop, email Shannon Oliver at shannon@olivertalents.ca.

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“Accessibility is particularly important to Northumberland Pride, and we are pleased to be able to confirm that the family and youth events are totally free of charge,” Schmidt said, adding the Northumberland Pride family Pride event has grown steadily since it began in 2022.

“We estimate that there were about 400 people in attendance in 2023, and we expect many more this year as this year’s family Pride is being held as part of the Cobourg Downtown Pride Festival,” he said.

When it comes to the Pride parade, the group is expecting local dignitaries, representatives of a broad range of local community organizations, members of the public school board community, and others to join the walk.

“Numbers are hard to predict but it will definitely be the biggest, proudest Pride parade Cobourg has yet to see,” Schmidt said.

Asked about the best possible outcome for Pride Month, he said it would be “continuing to develop and enhance meaningful partnerships with local organizations and (to) extend Northumberland Pride’s engagement with our local community into programming during all 12 months of the year.”