Manchester Gay Fest - August 2000

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What a fantastic weekend. As always Manchester laid on another Bank-Holiday, action-packed few days of fun. This year (2000) the Pride event was called "Gay Fest", instead of the previous "Mardi Gras". The whole event is there to celebrate being gay and raise loads of money for charity. It's always been the case until last year the money mysteriously failed to materialise, despite being the busiest year ever. This year's new committee was made up of 11 volunteers and headed by a chap called Brian Shaw. They took over to organise the event and have promised to raise the much needed charity funds.

It didn't seem as busy as previous years but was just as fun. The weather was partly to blame, certainly not encouraging attendance levels. There was no main stage, which disappointed many people, but must have brought the overall cost down considerably. Because the wrist-band idea had been scrapped there were many more straight people venturing onto Canal Street (the gay village). Which is both a good and bad thing depending on how you look at it. The bars were all packed both inside and out, making it hard to move but great for talent spotting. Like all gay events it's a place to catch up and bump into friends you haven't done for ages. The atmosphere was buzzing and the alcohol was flowing. The evening parties carried it all on into the early hours of the following morning.

The Parade took place on the Saturday afternoon. We were on the Manto float, which included a tank and people carrier on hire from the army.

The clubs were all buzzing with sexy boys, muscle mary's and party people. The Manto Group put on a fantastic line-up of entertainment. On Saturday they took over Manchester's University for a 5 room dance extravaganza, featuring Paradise Factory, Trade, Crash and Manto. On Sunday the big one was at the Granada Studios `Treat in the Street 6`. To rival this they put on a massive party in the newly refurbished `Infinity Nightclub`. It was a great venue and turned out to be a corker of a night with a atmosphere to match. When this finished at 4am they carried it on back at there own venue Paradise Factory till 10am called "HouseWork - the final blow-out", and what a blow-out it was!

Well done to all whom made it what it was, with a special mention to Jonathan, Shawn, Anne and Patsy. Thanks.

Check out the Manchester Pride web site:


Gay Fest Manchester 2000