The Year of London

With the Olympic Games, WorldPride, and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the Swinging City is rolling out the red carpet, and we’re all invited.




Drag queens frolic during PrideLondon 2011.

However, as enormous as these historic events may be, can either compare to hosting the world’s biggest gay party? A projected 1 million LGBTs and friends are expected to descend on Ye Olde London Town for WorldPride, the massive Pride event held only twice before. In 2000 it was held in Rome, and the pope just loved that. In 2006 it was in Jerusalem, and plenty of Orthodox Jews protested that event. It seems that InterPride, the organization that selects the WorldPride cities, was determined to select conservative religious hotspots. If that’s the case, London is a curious choice. One hardly imagines that the queen, in her capacity as head of the Church of England, will be particularly bothered. So fantastic festivities will be the draw instead.

At press time the final schedule of events hadn’t been made public. However, the revelry will include theatrical presentations, public debates, music and poetry events, and more parties than you can shake your bangers and mash at. The two-week-long festival, from June 23 to July 8, will culminate in a parade through the streets of London on Saturday, July 7, and a street party in the Soho neighborhood. There’s no better time to break open the piggy banks and pull out all the stops on a posh London experience.