Pin It
Favourite

Some people really love a parade 

Mz. Vicki Star-DeNight celebrates happiness.

Mz. Vicki Star-DeNight - NATHAN BOONE

A swagger-filled Mz. Vicki Star-DeNight sits, casually shirtless, at his kitchen table taking puffs on a cigarette balanced between fingers with magenta-painted nails. He's attended Halifax Pride for 21 years, witnessing the parade's evolution from radical marches to the gilded affair it is today.   

"Once upon a time, before we had our rights, a lot of gay pride parades sounded more like a demonstration because we didn't have equality. And that's not Pride---Pride is about celebrating, happiness, joy, knowing that we're all free of bondage, discrimination and whatever else is out there---hopefully."

In this year's parade, Star-DeNight will be marching as the newly crowned Empress 11 for the Imperial Sovereign Court of Atlantic Nova Scotia, a charitable court of queers that began as camp pageant in San Francisco in the 1960s. This is Star-DeNight's second reign as Empress, once holding the title nine years ago. "I've seen it progress from being a really small parade to being a big, huge success," he says. "I enjoy that it brings people together, it brings charities together, it's like a meet and greet."

Star-DeNight kicked off Pride at the flag-raising with mayor Peter Kelly. He doesn't take issue with Toronto mayor Rob Ford's decision not to march in the Pride parade or attend the flag-raising, both long-standing mayoral traditions.

"I'm sure he has a busy schedule," Star-DeNight says with a grin. "Because Pride is political---sometimes those things can happen---it's not right, but it's not wrong either."

"For me celebrating Pride means that I have freedom to go out there and celebrate with all my friends and the community and showing that we're strong and we're not going away." --Mairin Prentiss

Support The Coast

At a time when the city needs local coverage more than ever, we’re asking for your help to support independent journalism. We are committed as always to providing free access to readers, particularly as we confront the impact of COVID-19 in Halifax and beyond.

Read more about the work we do here, or consider making a donation. Thank you for your support!

Pin It
Favourite

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Mairin Prentiss

Get more Halifax

Our Thursday email gets you caught up with The Coast. Sign up and go deep on Halifax.

Coast Top Ten

© 2021 Coast Publishing Ltd.