The Dundalk Pride festival is taking place from the July 16-20.
Now in its fourth year, the festival was created to provide a regional version of the Pride events that take place among lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) communities worldwide.
The theme for this year’s festival is ‘Embrace Your Identity’.
“We chose this theme because Pride is not just a gay thing, it’s a community thing,” explained Committee member Kirsty Park.
“You can embrace your identity as a family member, friend or business by joining in the celebration and showing your support.”
The festival kicks off on Tuesday, July 16, with the ‘Identify’ Art Exhibition Launch in the Dundalk County Museum, to be launched by Senator Mary Moran.
Running throughout the festival, the exhibition is free to view and features submissions received from across the country after a nationwide call for entries.
A table quiz will take place on Thursday, July 18, from 9pm at McGeough’s Bar, Roden Place.
Tables cost €20 euro for a team of four (or €25 for five) and prizes will be awarded for the top scorers along with spot prizes throughout the night.
The Pride festival will be officially launched by Mr. Gerry Adams T.D. at the Dundalk Outcomers Centre in the Coach House, 8 Roden Place on Friday the 19th at 2pm. Everyone is welcome to attend and refreshments will be provided.
That Friday evening will see the Outcomers Courtyard hosting an outdoor Laughter Lounge featuring live comedy from some famous Irish comedians Oliver Callan, Al Porter, Margo Carr and Michael Downey.
Tickets for the Laughter Lounge cost €10 and the show starts at 7.30pm in Outcomers courtyard.
The biggest event on the Dundalk Pride calendar is the Pride Day taking place from 12pm to 5pm on Saturday, July 20 at the Outcomers Courtyard.
Attractions will include an outdoor café, live entertainment, holistic therapies, second hand bookshop, face painting, a children’s play area and much more. Entry is free.
“The Pride Day is a family friendly event and the whole point is that everyone is welcome,” said John Ruddy, Youth Coordinator at the Dundalk Outcomers.
“Volunteers have been working for months to transform the courtyard into a colourful and creative garden festival space and you’ll have to see it to believe it.”
Finally, the festival will end on the Saturday night with the Pride Party taking place from 10pm till late at the Fairways Hotel.
Paul Ryder, a GALA Award nominee for 2013, will be providing entertainment and DJ Conan will be back to provide the music.
Drinks promos including a two cocktails for €10 special which will be available on the night. The Fairways Hotel are also running a special accommodation rate of €39 for a double room.
For more information visit www.dundalkpride.com.