Williams Lake First Nation Chief Willie Sellars, from left, Mayor Walt Cobb and Billie Sheridan of Williams Lake Pride Society all spoke briefly to the crowd before the Pride flag was raised in Williams Lake at city hall to mark the official beginning of Pride in the Puddle. (Ruth Lloyd photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Pride in the Puddle kicks off in Williams Lake with official flag raising

A Rainbow Pride flag raised at city hall Aug. 15 marks the beginning of Pride in the Puddle

Pride in the Puddle kicked off in Williams Lake with the raising of the rainbow flag and declaration of an official Pride week by Mayor Walt Cobb. This is the first time the Pride flag has flown at city hall in Williams Lake.

The ceremony was attended by many supporters, media, city councillors and Williams Lake First Nation Kukpi7 (Chief) Willie Sellars.

“This is a long time coming,” said Billie Sheridan, secretary and spokesperson for the Williams Lake Pride Society. “I’ve been up since four o’clock in the morning with a big smile on my face.”

Williams Lake Mayor Walt Cobb read the city’s official declaration of Aug. 15 to 21 as Pride week in the lakecity, their first ever official Pride week.

Sellars also spoke before singing and drumming the Honour Song.

“We want to take great pride in this week,” he said, calling it a step forward for the community. “Everybody is equal in our eyes.”

He celebrated the amount of support local Pride events have had in the past, as well as the businesses which have put their support behind Pride in the Puddle.

While Covid had put a damper on previous years’ Pride festivities, Sellars said having an entire Pride week is “going to kick the doors off.”

While Sheridan said she expects this year may be small, she added, “Everything starts small and gains.”

This week’s activities will include a youth tie dye shirt night Wednesday, Aug. 17 from 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. hosted by BGC Williams Lake followed by the main celebration Saturday.

From 4 to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 20 will be Pride in the Park at Boitanio Park, with games, information booths and music followed by a Pride Parade at 8:30 p.m. with the theme “Illuminate Your Life” in downtown Williams Lake.

The group will meet up back at the park from 9:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. for music and a night marketplace for those 14 years and older.

Read more: Illuminate your Life theme for Williams Lake Pride Society parade Aug. 20

Read more: UPDATE: Williams Lake to raise the rainbow flag and declare first official Pride Week


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