On Sunday, May 22, Fingal was flooded with the colours of the rainbow for its first-ever Pride Festival. The LGBTQ+ community and allies gathered in the Swords Castle and Gardens to celebrate and fight for equality for all queer people.
Sponsored by Fingal County Council and the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, the event started at the Swords Castle at 12pm and entertained its participants until its closing time, at 6 pm. It was a family-friendly event in which people of all ages were invited to participate, as testified by an extra stage dedicated to families and children.
The Festival was an ensemble of bright and colorful performances in celebration of queer joy, displaying a wide array of Irish LGBTQ+ talents on its two stages. On the main stage, celebrations were started off by broadcaster and DJ Kate Brennan Harding, who then let Cork-based acoustic duo Sparkle steal the audience’s attention.
After delighting the crowd with their music, the band left the stage to let drag shows begin. With iconic names like comedian Dame Stuffy and dancer and singer Éire Comme, the audience was sure to be entertained. But the show didn’t end with them and instead went on with some more music by electronic pop sensation Viscose, followed by queer Irish musician St Bishop (did you know he launched a brand new EP only last month? Check out our interview with the artist here).
Fingal Pride at Swords Castle today. Lots of fun and colour. Drop in and enjoy.@EVENTSinFingal @MayorofFingal @Fingalintegrat1 pic.twitter.com/xOFJiD2EzE
— AnnMarie Farrelly (@AnnMarieFingal) May 22, 2022
The show on the main stage was brought to an end by none other than Dublin drag queen Viola Gayvis. Earlier in the day, the drag performer was also the one in charge of the opening act on the family stage, a Drag Storytime during which she read Our Big Day, a story by The Gutter Bookshop owner Bob Johnston.
The author himself showed up at the event, took a picture with Viola and later posted it on Twitter, commenting: “Feeling way too unglamorous to pose with the stunning Viola Gayvis who’s reading #OurBigDay at #FingalPride”.
Some more entertainment for the younger also took the form of magic with Colm Dawson and arts, crafts and games with Laura from QuaintBaby Art.
Feeling way too unglamorous to pose with the stunning Viola Gayvis who's reading #OurBigDay at #FingalPride pic.twitter.com/Ylm5xPA440
— Gutter Bookshop (@gutterbookshop) May 22, 2022
The Festival proved to be a huge success, bringing joy and laughter to the whole crowd. Acting Mayor of Fingal David Healy & Minister Roderic O’Gorman made an appearance at Fingal Pride, with the latter sharing his enthusiasm on socials with the words: “Wonderful to take part in @FingalPride today in Swords Castle. Thanks to @Fingalcoco and @DublinPride for organising a fantastic day.”
He was not the only enthusiastic one, as everyone who participated in the Festival seemed to have a great time, with many posting colorful pictures of the event on socials.
“Wonderful day at @FingalPride great atmosphere and lots of entertainment” commented one user.
Fingal Pride is part of Dublin LGBTQ+ Pride. For more information on what they do and other events, check out their webpage here.
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