With exactly one month to go until our 2017 Pride Parade, the Edmonton Pride Festival Society is so pleased to announce our 2017 Parade Grand Marshal: The Edmonton Two-Spirit Community!

The Edmonton Pride Festival is entering its 37th year of celebrating Pride on Treaty Six territory, a traditional gathering place for many indigenous peoples, including Cree, Saulteaux, Blackfoot, Métis, and Nakota Sioux. Indigenous people believe that both the female and male spirits reside in the body of a Two-Spirit individual and the degree of dominance of each spirit impacts the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual identity of each Two-Spirit person.

“We are honored and deeply humbled to accept the invitation of Grand Marshal for the Pride Parade,” Two-Spirit coordinator with the Edmonton Pride Centre, Boyd Whiskeyjack says, “This is a great opportunity to showcase our indigenous heritage.  Two-Spirit people continue to face discrimination and marginalization from within our own Nations and as a result experience suicide, depression, and high risk behaviors at a higher prevalence.  Unfortunately Two-Spirit youth having the highest risk of suicide, the highest being transgendered youth. Our goal is to increase the visibility and awareness of two spirit people in our Nations.”

The Edmonton Pride Festival Society believes that diversity is the strength of the LGBTQ2S+ community, and we hope you will take some time during this year’s festival to reflect on how we can better support all members of our community.

Thank you and happy Pride!

The Edmonton Pride Festival Board of Directors