Share this profile:
Following the launch of a planning committee in 2010, the first event was done in 2011. For the first two years it consisted solely of a community festival, with a parade added to the event calendar for the first time in 2013. It was only the second pride festival ever launched in the Northern Ontario region, following Sudbury Pride in 1997.
The organizing committee of Thunder Pride is made up of a wide spectrum of Thunder Bay residents including educators, entrepreneurs, union leaders, ministers, artists and film makers, community service workers and others from all walks of life. We come come together to support friends, family, colleagues and neighbors within our city and region.
As we progress into this year of planning, we are incorporated and continue to be excited at the number of people who are asking how they can get involved – each one of them eager to help to move this community forward.
Thunder Pride is a member of the Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce.
"In 2010, just five days before Christmas, a group of wonderful and enthusiastic folks crammed into a small, but cozy, union office space to discuss and ultimately plan a week-long LGBTQ2+ pride event for the city of Thunder Bay....
Two friends and mothers – one two-spirited, one the mother of a (quite handsome) young gay man – had something in common. Ellen Chambers, an educator and local ETFO (Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario) president, was relentless in advocating for anti-bullying of LGBTQ2+ youth in schools. She accomplished this after years of perseverance in her stand for human rights. Rachel Mishenene, an Aboriginal educator and also an active union member – who, a few years prior, flew out of the closet with rainbow garb galore – had a conversation with her (also handsome) son after leaving a Pride event just south of the border. He asked his mom why Thunder Bay didn’t have a Pride event, and said Thunder Bay should have one."