By: Wani Azahar
On Friday June 12, 2015, the culmination of Tel Aviv Pride Week, upwards of 180,000 people took part in the record-breaking Tel Aviv Gay Pride Parade 2015, which featured creative parade floats, amazing musical performances, plenty of dancing, daring outfits and the absolute freedom for every person in attendance to be him/herself.
In search of the true essence of pride parade, we scoured through the ocean of hot bodies, vibrant costumes and talented performances to find out what Tel Aviv Pride goers truly love about the parade and what Pride means to them. One thing we can tell you ahead of time is that, predictably, love is a common theme.
“My absolute favorite was the amazing party at Charles Close Park at the end of the road. It was filled with fun people, crazy outfits and most importantly – a lot of love,” Shira from Israel (right) recalled. “Not only that, I also loved the difference performance trucks lining the road. The dancers are very talented and it was so nice to see other parade-goers join in the fun as they formed little circles to dance.
“There were a lot of smiles and people were just having fun being themselves — which I guess, what being at Pride means. You won’t introduce yourself with a mask on; so I think Pride allows people to be themselves… unmasked (or masked, depending on your costume!). You get to be your natural self and there’s always something good in that”
“What I love about Pride is how all the (gay) people are behaving so freely,” Dilyana from Bulgaria said. “They aren’t afraid to show who they are no matter how weird it is or may seem to other. They’re not holding up anything and it’s just so nice to be in such a free environment where anyone (and everyone) can be whoever they are or want to be.
“This is my first time at Pride and I came to this event simply out of curiosity. I’ve heard so much about it and known it to be one of the biggest parades in the world. But now, being here has shown me that Pride is more than that. There are a lot of people who want to express themselves and everyday circumstances might not allow for that — so they get to do it here.”
“We are here, right in the middle of the Middle East, one of the less free regions on the planet and we are here as the most free people in the world!” Marissa from London exclaimed.
“It’s my first time at Pride and it’s lovely to see everybody having a great time. There are people from everywhere with different orientations. Gay, straight, or whatever their sexual preference is — everybody is here to have a great time and that’s what I love about it.”
Sierra and Erika, USA
“I identify as a bisexual and me being here for all the different sexualities is just really being supportive. They have gone through a lot lately and I think it’s great to have a day totally dedicated to them — even if it’s just for a day,” Erika from Florida (3rd from left) said.
“I just love how happy it all is here. It’s just a good feeling.”
“What I love the most about Pride is how the LGBT community can express themselves freely,” Sierra from New York (4th from left) added. “They can be who they really want to be and I think that is really important, so I’m here to support that.”
“I have gay friends and I absolutely love them as with all my other friends. Whether you’re gay or straight, it’s just like any other friendships and I want them to know that t I support them for being who they are and want to be,” Don from Israel extolled. “More than that, I am proud of them and to be their friend. So I’m here to share their joy and party with them on their day.”
About the author
Never starting the day without a warm cup of coffee, Wani Azahar is from Singapore and loves sharing about her travel and dining adventures. You can connect with her on Instagram @flying_rockett.