Equality and basic human rights take Pride of place in Oban

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Venues across Oban were awash with colour on Saturday as Oban Pride 2021 spread joy among the community.

Go Bananas (Happy Wee Health Club), The Bridge Cafe, Argyll Wellbeing Hub, Oban Youth Cafe and Oban Phoenix Cinema each hosted family friendly events for everyone to enjoy.

Fun and laughter were an essential part of the day as the Oban Pride committee and their supporters spread the message to gain recognition of the basic human rights for all LGBTQ+ people.

Oban Pride chairman Phill Dexter sent a heartfelt thank you to everyone who attended and made Oban Pride 2021 the success it was.

‘Myself and the committee were overwhelmed with the support we received once again from the town,’ he told The Oban Times.

‘From businesses to individuals to all of our supporters, donators, venues, venue staff, stall holder, our fabulous acts, our amazing volunteers and committee who made the day possible and the success it was.

‘Pride is such an amazing and important thing to have in every community. No matter where you are in the world LGBTQ+ people face some form of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.

‘This is why we have Pride to stand up to this.’

On the day itself, Phill stayed in the background as his alter ego and Oban Pride poster girl Crystal stepped into the spotlight as hostess of the Rainbow Stage at Oban Phoenix Cinema where Conway-MacLean Music, Sadie Godiva, Ellie Cooper and Rock and Reel entertained enthusiastic audiences across two performances.

In between the musical acts, Crystal delivered a powerful presentation highlighting the reasons the Pride movement was formed and why there is still a need for a change.

The pièce de résistance came at the end of the second show of the day. During a rendition of Cher’s Pride anthem, the larger than life loveable diva shed her coiffured hair piece, sparkling dress and lengthy eyelashes and like a butterfly in reverse transformed back into the equally loveable Phill. The first time the two had shared the same stage, the unrehearsed impromptu finale brought the audience to its feet.

‘Oban Pride 2021 was an amazing and the atmosphere at the cinema for our Rainbow Stage was out of this world,’ added Phill.

‘Everyone who attended seem to have had a fantastic time. The same was true at all of our venues and we are so glad to hear it.

‘We look forward to starting our preparations for and seeing everyone at Oban Pride 2022.’

Funded by the National Lottery with donations from local businesses and individuals, all events at Oban Pride 2021 were free and accessible to everyone.