From The Georgia Straight: In the lead-up to Vancouver’s highly anticipated Pride Parade on Sunday (August 5), several establishments around town are hosting Pride-themed events to kick-off the festivities.
What better way to celebrate the LGBT community than with delicious bites and libations? From parade viewings paired with brunch to canapés with drag queens, here are six Pride-themed food events to check out in the city.
1. Brunch and Parade Viewing at the Boathouse (1795 Beach Avenue)
Conveniently located along the Pride Parade route, those who join the brunch and parade viewing at the Boathouse on August 5 (10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.) will get to witness the colourful spectacle from all three levels of the restaurant. Enjoy grub from its west coast-style buffet, and quench your thirst with a drink or two from the cash bar. Tickets ($45 per person, plus taxes and fees) are sold out, but perhaps you can call and get on their waitlist.
2. Cocktails, Canapés, and Queens at D/6 Bar and Lounge (39 Smithe Street)
Pride-goers who enjoy music and drag queens should mark their calendars for this food-filled event at Parq Vancouver’s stylish bar and lounge on August 4 (2 to 7 p.m.). Record producer and captivating drag queen Pearl will showcase a three-hour DJ set alongside local drag queen troupe the Brat Pack. Tickets ($80 per person, plus taxes and fees) include a welcome cocktail, canapés, and access to a dessert bar, and can be purchased online.
3. Pride Kick-off Party at Tacofino Gastown (15 West Cordova Street)
This Gastown eatery is gearing up for the Pride weekend with a kick-off party on August 3 (3 to 7 p.m.), where DJ Gissala will provide the tunes and four drag performers will be working their magic. Happy hour bites and the Pride-themed RoSlay Sangria (rosé, fresh lime juice, El Jimador blanco, agave nectar, soda, berries, and mint) will be available. From August 3 to 6, a portion of the sangria proceeds will go toward Qmunity (a non-profit organization that aims to improve the lives of queer, trans, and Two-Spirit individuals).
4. Pride Parade Patio Brunch at Whole Foods (1675 Robson Street)
If you haven’t noticed by now, brunch and Pride Parade viewings pretty much go hand-in-hand. Whole Foods on Robson will be hosting a patio brunch on August 5 (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.). Guests will be able to enjoy a hearty breakfast, coffee, mimosas, a VIP gift bag, and more. If you’re an early bird, check out the grocery giant’s $5 waffle breakfast in its parking lot in the morning. 100 percent of ticket sales will go toward LGBT community programs and services. Tickets ($75 per person plus fees) can be purchased online.
5. Sunset Beach Festival (1204 Beach Avenue)
This free family-friendly affair encourages you to bring the entire brood to celebrate Pride in the city on August 5 (11 a.m. to 6 p.m.) at Sunset Beach. The waterside fête will feature a main stage with performances by local musical talent and drag performers, as well as a community zone and family-fun zone. A beer garden, food trucks, interactive art, dance lessons, and ultimate Frisbee are some of the other activities that will be available at the festival.
6. Terry Wallace Memorial Breakfast at Jim Deva Plaza (1200 Bute Street)
This annual celebration meal that takes places on August 4 (8 a.m.) commemorates one of the Vancouver Pride society’s founders, Terry Wallace, who raised money for the Pride Parade through years of financial instability. Early birds can check out this by-donation buffet pancake breakfast in the heart of the Davie Village, organized by local volunteers.