The Rainbow connection

Chris Hadfield was flying the flags.

Wānaka Community Board member Chris Hadfield has joined the ranks of those who improvise during lockdown.


The owner of Ritual Cafe in Helwick Street lamented the cancellation of the Winter Pride event in Queenstown - but wasn’t going to let the moment go completely unnoticed.


“I became involved a few years ago and this year became part of the Roll Out The Rainbow which is designed as an all inclusive promotion including a Pride Pledge by businesses,” he said.


“It is an initiative which aims to raise visibility for safe spaces in our communities. The focus is to raise awareness of the values of safety, inclusiveness and health for all LGBTQI+ people.”


As part of the promotion the original plan was to have shops decorate their windows with a Pride theme.


The latest Covid break out and subsequent lockdown filled the Winter Pride event - and the shop window competition.


“Despite this I decided that at the very least I could arrange for the Pride flags to be displayed. So with council permission I placed two flags on Helwick Street to mark the occasion,” he said.


Winter Pride is a week of functions, skiing and apres ski events.


This year’s event was to run from August 27 to September 5 and feature more than 40 events. Organisers had boosted capacity for the event by more than 1800 individual tickets.


Organiser Martin King told media the cancellation meant “millions, millions and millions of economic impact lost.”

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