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Event Review: York Pride 2023

The Rainbow & Co stall at York Pride 2023. Adam stands behind the stall with friend David Krushell from Evolve Your Digital.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Event: York Pride

Date: 3rd June 2023

Location: Knavesmire, York

A colourful celebration of love and inclusion!

I had the pleasure of participating for a second year in the vibrant and inclusive event that was York Pride 2023 on 3rd June. It is the largest free Pride event in North Yorkshire, held at the Knavesmire next to York racecourse, and it was a delight to attend.

Organisation and Atmosphere:

York Pride 2023 demonstrated impeccable organisation from start to finish. The event was meticulously planned, with clear signage and a well-designed layout that allowed attendees to navigate the venue easily. The communication from start to finish was amazing, even with a little reminder the day before to bring a hammer to set up the gazebo as the weather was good and the ground was hard!

The atmosphere was electric and buzzing with excitement once the parade arrived. People of all ages, backgrounds, and identities came together to show their support and celebrate diversity. The rainbow flags, vibrant decorations, and colourful costumes created an uplifting ambience that set the perfect tone for the day.

Crowd Control and Accessibility:

Being held in such a big open space, the festival had no issues with crowd control. Accessibility was also a top priority with pathways/trackways, ramps, and designated seating areas with raised viewing platforms provided, making it inclusive for individuals with mobility challenges.

Stallholders observed a quiet hour between 11.30 am and 12.30 pm for all people
to enjoy the festival and visit stalls without loud music and crowds, perfect for neurodivergent visitors and throughout the day there was a BSL interpreter on the main stage.

It was heartening to see such attention to detail, ensuring that everyone felt welcome
and able to fully participate in the event.

The view from the Rainbow & Co stall at York Pride 2023

Performances and Food:

The hardcore festival goers arrived early, prepared with their cool boxes, picnics, and
blankets, ready for a full day of performances. With a line-up of talented artists, singers, and dancers showcasing a diverse range of talents and captivating the audience throughout the day, they were in for a treat.

Featuring both local talents and renowned LGBTQ+ performers, my standout acts included the very funny Kitty Scott-Claus, and the talented Beyonce Fierce who had the crowd singing along. The energetic atmosphere created by the performances was infectious and truly embodied the spirit of Pride.

When it comes to food, York Pride 2023 once again did not disappoint. A wide array of food vendors offered an assortment of delicious options to satisfy every craving. From local food trucks serving mouth-watering Yorkshire pudding wraps, noodles, and Mexican street food to stalls offering sweet treats including the “D*ck on a Stick” sweet waffle, HUGE rainbow cookies from Cray Bakes and refreshing slush bevarges perfect for the hot weather.

The amazing M&M Rainbow Cookie from Cray Bakes

Stalls and Highlights:

With significantly more stalls attending compared to 2022, York Pride 2023 showcased a vibrant tapestry of organisations, businesses, and community groups that support and champion LGBTQ+ rights.

Everything from True Self Wealth who specialise in Financial Advice; to the LGBTQ+ Portal Bookshop; and our friend Sophie Kathleen with their amazing illustrations plus many many more.

As a fellow stallholder, it was heartening to see the support and engagement from all those that visited our stall. We had the opportunity to connect with new and returning customers from diverse backgrounds, share our message of inclusivity, and spread love through our colourful merchandise. Yet again the new Retro collection was very well received and proved a best seller on the day!

As a reward for reaching this far in the review, use code FREEBADGE at the checkout to receive a free badge of your choice, with every order placed before 30th June 2023.

Overall Experience and Conclusion:

Participating in York Pride 2023 as a stall holder for Rainbow & Co was a great experience. The event showcased the unwavering support and acceptance of the LGBTQ+ community in an atmosphere of love, celebration, and inclusivity. 

The organisation was exemplary, ensuring smooth operations and accessibility for all. The performances and food offerings were outstanding, keeping everyone entertained and well-nourished. The array of stalls and entertainment further amplified the event's impact, creating a space for connection, education, and empowerment.

My rating for York Pride 2023 has to be 5 out of 5 as they exemplified the essence of Pride, and we eagerly look forward to participating again in the future.

Next Event: Blackpool Pride, Saturday 10th June 2023

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