The Central Alberta Pride Society unveiled two rainbow crosswalks in downtown Red Deer Thursday morning.

This is the third year that the crosswalks have been painted, with support from Fargeys Decorating Centre.

They are located at the intersection of Gaetz Avenue and Ross Street.

“It’s a symbol of not only the LGBTQ community but also an invitation to the community at large to join us and celebrate who we are,” said Serge Gingras, chair of the Central Alberta Pride Society.

Gingras has been a Red Deer resident for 33 years. In the last decade, he said society has changed to become more accepting, not just of the LGBTQ community but of people with a range of identities.

“I’ve seen a great effort from different levels of government and different sectors of our community — business, education, whatnot … really embracing inclusion and diversity,” he said.

2018 08 09 PrideCrosswalk1Pedestrians walking across the rainbow crosswalk on Aug. 9 in downtown Red Deer.

The rainbow crosswalk has been an iconic symbol of the LGBTQ community and one day, the society hopes to make one permanent.

“It’s a reminder of Pride Week. But if we had the permanent crosswalk, I think it would remind people all year, that this is part of the community and we’re here 365 days a year,” Gingras said.

The idea behind the crosswalk in Red Deer came from one of the society’s board members in 2016. Gingras said the City of Red Deer did the painting that year.

Since then, the community has taken over.

“For the last two years, the crosswalk has been fully funded by fundraising or the society and donation by Fargeys,” he said.

There have been cases of vandalism in the past. Gingras said such occurrences happen everywhere.

“In every community, there are people who don’t agree with who the LGBTQ community is and they don’t agree with the fact that there are people who are different than they are,” he said.

“One of my hopes is, through the crosswalk and the celebration of Pride Week, people start asking questions and start investigating a little bit more about who we are … There’s more to one person than the one thing you know about them. It’s only by establishing relationships, asking questions … to find things in common and to start embracing that diversity to become eventually more inclusive.”

More Local News

Clearwater County Firefighters Deployed to Help with B.C. Wildfires

Once again, Clearwater Regional Fire Rescue Services has been asked to help battle the raging wildfires in British Columbia. The Clearwater team serves Clearwater county, the town of Rocky Mountain…

Alberta Local Food Week Shines Spotlight on Area Producers

To be proclaimed every third week of August, the Alberta government has declared this week as Alberta Local Food Week, a time for people to experience and celebrate the provinces local food industry.…

An Appreciation Weekend for Local Food

Alberta Open Farm days is this weekend and is a chance for farmers and producers to show what they put their heart and soul into. There are over 100 different farms, greenhouses, wineries, breweries…

What's up with all the Wasps?

If you have spent the last few months of your summer avoiding the outdoors because of our pesky yellow and black ‘buzzing’ friends, you aren’t alone. This year it seems as though there are an…

Jazz at the Lake Festival Returns to Sylvan

The 16th annual Jazz at the Festival is coming back to Sylvan Lake this weekend, starting Friday, August 17th and going until Sunday. President of the board for Jazz at the Lake Festival Eric Allison…

RD RCMP Looking for Suspect Accused of Writing Fraudulent Cheques

From Red Deer RCMP: Red Deer RCMP are looking for public assistance to identify a fraud suspect after a man had $6,800 stolen from his bank accounts using stolen cheques and identification. The…

Ponoka Man Arrested following apparent Mischief with an Axe and Arson

From Ponoka RCMP: The RCMP have arrested and charged one male following a series of incidents which occurred over a two hour period in downtown Ponoka on August 13. During this time windows were…

City Planning Henner’s Pond Stormwater Outlet to Wolf Creek

Content provided by the City of Lacombe: This winter, the City of Lacombe is planning to construct a stormwater outlet from Henner’s Pond to William’s Slough to Wolf Creek. (Bright green lines/dash:…

Celebration held to mark Reopening of Main Street in Lacombe

City officials held a gathering in downtown Lacombe Wednesday night to celebrate the completion of the Main Street makeover. It was last year that construction commenced to replace a sanitary sewer…

Vehicle vandalism spree in Ponoka early Wednesday morning

Police said around 3 a.m. Wednesday morning, somebody vandalized vehicles with black paint on 61 Avenue near 59 Street. The markings were described as straight or squiggly lines, and it is believed…

CochraneNow.com is Cochrane's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide

Login