It’s always nerve-wracking when you’re coming into an event that has a full and rich history. The Metro Manila Pride March has been around for decades and it’s easy to get intimated by the camaraderie and long-established bonds.
But don’t fear! Whether you’re a march newbie or a veteran, this year’s Metro Manila Pride March and Festival will be a first for everyone involved since it’ll be the first one held at Marikina City. So, we’re all newbies.
Whether you’re a gayby pride marcher or an oldie pride marcher, here’s how enjoy a seamless experience at the Metro Manila Pride March.
An online pre-registration sheet was published earlier this month to help get an accurate headcount of how many people are going to be there to march. This helped the organizers prepare everything from security to those cool rainbow bands they give to attendees. If you haven’t registered or if you didn’t get an email reply, that’s okay! Just show up at the Festival!
Individuals who are coming alone or friends also get a chance to meet up with other individuals that the organizers have gathered into one group called the Pridekada! You also get the chance to be part of a really cool part of the program. If you want to march with the Pridekada, join the Facebook group here: MMPF Pridekada Facebook Group.
The rainy season is upon us so remember to bring a hat an umbrella or even your own tiny portable electric fan.
Here’s a handy list to be Pride prepared:
It’s a new venue! So it’s important everyone familiarizes themselves with the route to the event proper. For those who are map-literate you can find the map with landmarks here. Rainbow drop pin marks the spot!
For those who need a little more assistance Sakay.ph provides friendly and easy-to-understand directions.
If you’re bringing a car remember that there will be limited parking slots so better to arrive early and carpool if you can to save the environment.
With the help of the Marikina City Government and Police, the security for the Festival has been increased this year. There will be only two entrances for foot traffic. At both entrances, there will be security checks conducted by Marikina Police. All items deemed dangerous will be confiscated.
Upon entering the festival area, our volunteers will attach rainbow bands to your wrist. These will serve as your “ticket” for the festival. Please do not take these off at any time during the event!
Go straight for the information boot, grab a printed Pride Guide or familiarize yourself with the venue map tarp on the booth! Make a mental note of the First Aid and Security Station just in case.
If you pre-ordered merchandise or if you’re a Pride Fund Donor, go to the MMP Merchandise booth to claim your merch between 12 NN – 2:20 PM and 5:20 PM onwards. If you didn’t pre-order but want to get your hands on official Pride Merch, be sure you come early before they get sold out!
We’re also setting up a Freedom/Photo Wall! Be sure to tag @mmprideorg in your pictures, always use the hashtag #HereTogether, and set your geotag to Marikina City!
It’ll be a full afternoon of activities starting with the assembly and kick-off at 12 noon followed by solidarity messages and performers from the LGBTQ+ community.
Start off with inspiring solidarity speeches from community organizations. These will remind you that even when life as an LGBTQ+ person seems bleak, there are all these amazing people working to make sure it gets better. As if that wasn’t inspiration enough, we’re also going to have a welcome address from the Marikina City Mayor Marcelino Teodoro, who is a huge education advocate, and the keynote speech will be delivered by Senator Risa Hontiveros, the principal author of the Senate SOGIE Equality Bill and a long-time LGBTQ+ ally.
Enjoy the myriad of talents that will be showcased – from dancing, to singing to poetry reading. Pride 2016 favorites Lady Gagita and Words Anonymous will again be performing. But we’re also seeing new faces this year like garage punk rock band Flying Ipis, spoken word duo Ampalaya Monologues, indie-folk singer TheSunManager, and The Voice PH Contestant Rita Martinez.
While you’re waiting for the march proper to start, go and make new friends and buy exciting Pride related merchandise at the Proud Street Fair. Some booths to watch out for
Not only that, this year features a secret something happening right after Senator Hontiveros’ speech that’s sure to be one for the books. Tip: Stay close to the middle of the venue to get a chance to be part of it!
All of these will culminate with the first ever Metro Manila Pride March in Marikina City. The march is supposed to take around 45 minutes to complete. So make sure you wear comfortable shoes or bring a pair that you can change into when your feet start killing you! This part is really fun because you can join the chants of the different groups, dance alongside the party floats, or chant and dance alongside new friends you’ll make at the Pridekada contingent up front!
And to cap off the night will be the always epic Evening Program which will end with a cool DJ set featuring the songs from all the Kweens! Be sure to stick around for that!
Keep in mind that you’re guests of the good city of Marikina so be polite, follow the rules and remember:
If you’re thinking “OMG INFORMATION OVERLOAD,” I get you and I got you! You can do one of two things to help you navigate Pride and consume the information at your own pace: