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Aurora Pride brings premier festival of inclusion Aug. 5 to City Hall’s Great Lawn

August 16, 2017

AURORA | Aurora’s gay community pride will be part of the show at the city’s municipal center on Aug. 5.

Aurora Pride fest on Aug. 5 marks the first time the city has had an official pride festival and to help mark the occasion there is going to be something for everyone whether you’re 41, 21 or 2. Along with a mainstage, which will feature performances from musicians, poets and drag queens extraordinaire, there will be an adult themed section and stage as well as a family-friendly section and stage as well.

Melisa Master, a volunteer with the event, said for the kids area, some of the drag queens and drag kings who are participating will be dressing up as favorite Disney characters and singing some favorite numbers. And activities on the adult stage will include a hot dog and taco eating contest. Rim shot.

“No puns to make there,” Master sarcastically said.

One of the main stage acts is Aurora resident Todd Peckham and his drag queen persona Daniella DeCoteau. Peckham said DeCoteau plans to put on a show that will feature her signature wit, humor and all the vocals an audience can handle.

“She’s loud and obnoxious, she’s theatrical and she’s a showgirl,” Peckham said of his alter ego. “She comes alive for sure once you get the makeup and wig on. She’s boisterous and she’s funny and she toes that line of impropriety and then balances on that line without going over.”

DeCoteau plans on doing a handful of songs ranging from artists like Celine Dion to Beyonce with a number from the movie “Dream Girls” thrown in there as well.

“Since it’s the first year and we don’t know who the audience will be, (the numbers I’m preparing) will run the gamut,” Peckham said.

Colorado native Peckham is a 16-plus year resident of Aurora and was excited for his home city to get its own festival separate from Denver’s big event. While a few people were surprised to find out Aurora is putting on its own pride festival being next to Denver, Peckham said that’s what makes pride festivals so wonderful. Every city can have one of its own. There’s more than enough pride to go around.

“Aurora being so large of a city, I think it’s cool we’re getting our own festival. I’m hoping it’s just proving the progressiveness of the city I live in and the tolerance and progress of this suburban, Colorado city,” Peckham said.

Along with the festivities, there will be plenty of food and merchandise vendors. One of the mainstays of the pride festival circuit in Colorado, Get Your Gay On, will be up selling a plethora of pride supplies on Aug. 5.

Owner Jim Maser started his company in 2009 after realizing there wasn’t a one-stop shop for people at Denver’s PrideFest to get everything they need to show off their pride. In his eighth season in operation, Miser said he has loved being able to combine his business with showing support for his friends and family in the community.

“The business has evolved to where people come see us every year. We see them every single year because they know we treat them with respect and make them laugh,” Miser said. “Every year we have a good time and it’s a fun event for all of us.”

For more details see www.aurorapride.com

Aurora Pride 2017

What: Aurora Pride

When: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sat. Aug. 5

Where: Aurora Municipal Center 15151 E. Alameda Parkway

Details: Admission is free.

Mainstage lineup

Noon.: Axel Massacre – dancer and performer

12:30 p.m.: Her? – Drag queen

2 p.m.: Menaje E’toi – Drag queen 2:30 p.m.: Britney Evan Williams – Musician

2:45 p.m.: Poetry readings

3:15 p.m.: Club Q – performers from Club Q which puts on pride in Colorado Springs

4 p.m.: Dance is Love – Dance group

4:30 p.m.: Daniella DeCoteau – Aurora drag queen headlining the mainstage

5 p.m.: Vivica Galactica – Drag performance

In addition to entertainment and a variety of vendor booths, the festival will offer a wide selection of food trucks and craft beer offerings, inside the adult-area only.