New Gold Coast LGBTIQ festival to launch this weekend

gold coast surfers paradise sign pride festival stock photo
Photo: Kgbo/Wikimedia Commons

A new Gold Coast LGBTIQ+ festival will launch at Surfers Paradise this weekend, and organisers will share exciting plans for 2021.

Update: Please be aware of the following directive from Queensland Health regarding gatherings on the Gold Coast from 8 am Saturday morning:

Gold Coast Rainbow Communities is a new not-for-profit LGBTIQ group forming on the Coast.

On Sunday (August 30), the group will hold a public launch from 2pm under the Surfers Paradise sign at Cavill Avenue.

Organisers Don Balfour and Vince Sicilini say they’ve got big plans for the group, including a new Gold Coast Pride Festival in the future.

“A Pride Festival is definitely on the cards, but as we know with COVID-19 the situation has changed,” Don told

“However it’s not only about holding a Fair Day. It’s about a whole range of other things. We’re hoping to provide for our community in many different ways.

“There’s nothing for our community on the Gold Coast but there are queer people here and we want to bring them together.

“We want something – and we need something – on the Coast for our community.

“We want a wide range of people to get involved in Rainbow Communities and make the group as inclusive as possible.”

Gold Coast City Council backs launch of new LGBTIQ festival

Local councillor Darren Taylor, PFLAG Gold Coast leaders and police LGBTI Liaison Officer Damon Cempiel will also speak on Sunday.

Drag queens Martini Fernando Ice and Carmen Taykett and the Gold Coast’s Meter Maids and Meter Boys will also make special appearances.

“We’ve had the full support of the Gold Coast City Council with this event, they’re very excited about it,” Don told

gold coast rainbow communities lgbtiq group pride festival

“When we meet at the Surfers Paradise sign, social distancing is obviously very important. It’s a public space in a public area, but we would like everyone to wear masks.

“We would also like to take people’s names as part of our plan to make sure everyone stays safe.”

After the speeches on the waterfront, all are invited to a special event at The Islander Resort’s rooftop bar from 3pm.

“The Islander have been so wonderful, they’ve let us use their upstairs venue for the afternoon,” he said.

“Of course, they have their full COVID-Safe plan in place and we’ll be following the guidelines.”

You can join the Gold Coast Rainbow Communities Facebook group here.

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Jordan Hirst
Jordan Hirst

Jordan Hirst is an experienced journalist and content creator with a career spanning over a decade at QNews. Since 2012, the Brisbane local has covered an enormous range of topics and subjects in-depth affecting the LGBTIQA+ community, both in Australia and overseas. Today, the Brisbane-based journalist covers everything from current affairs, politics and health to sport and entertainment.

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