The Gay Easter Parade has officially been cancelled for 2021 due to COVID-19 concerns and the current restrictions put in place by State and City officials. This will be the second consecutive year the parade has been prevented from rolling due to the coronavirus pandemic. Ambush Magazine coordinates the parade each year.
The Gay Easter Parade started in 2000 in New Orleans as a fun way to showcase the fashion and creativity of the entire LGBT community “with ladies in gowns or summer suits with Easter Hats and gentlemen in summer suits or tuxedos.” It’s meant to be a light-hearted cultural event the whole family can attend regardless of whether or not one identifies as LGBTQ.
Each year 2 individuals are selected as Grand Marshals to reign over the Easter festivities. In 2020, Dominique DeLorean and James Garner were chosen to be Grand Marshals. Because of the pandemic they will continue their reign through Easter Sunday 2022. Dominique is an entertainer and headliner at Oz New Orleans. Garner is the owner of the Golden Lantern (Home of Southern Decadence).
The Gay Easter Parade is preceeded by several weekends of fundraisers held at various gay bars throughout the city. The money raised helps to pay for the parade; all excess proceeds are then donated to Food for Friends, a division of CrescentCare. Food for Friends provides meals and access to a food pantry for clients and their families. Five different organizations refer eligible people living with HIV to the Food for Friends pantry and its associated home delivery meal service.
This year more than ever, Food for Friends and CrescentCare could use your support. We are asking everyone to make a donation to Food for Friends. Food for Friends currently needs donations of non perishable food items and hygiene products. Starting Sunday, March 28 and running through Easter Sunday you can make a donation at one of several gay bars located in the city. Participating bars include The Page, The Phoenix, Betty’s Bar and Bistro, Crossing, Good Friends, Lafitte’s in Exile, Rawhide, The Corner Pocket, The Golden Lantern, GrandPre’s, The Bourbon Pub and Parade, Oz, Kajuns and Mags 940. You can make a monetary donation by going to crescentcarehealth.org/donate/ and designating that your donation be used for “Food for Friends”.