Cape Town -120303 - The Gay Pride Parade flourished down Somerset Road in Greenpoint in a festivity of colours, costumes and music. There was a huge turnout and a number of floats, patrolled by stern faced traffic officers and policemen, unwittingly dressed in outfits resembling characters from Village People's YMCA soundtrack. PICTURE: THOMAS HOLDER

Cape Town - The City of Cape Town has taken steps to ensure that the annual march of chaps in feather boas does not clash with a parade of chaps in kilts.

Saturday’s annual Cape Town Pride March has been diverted to avoid Cape Town’s Freedom of Entry Parade for military reservist units that have the freedom of the city.

Along with the Cape Town Highlanders, they include Air Force Base Ysterplaat which is exercising its right for the first time, the Cape Garrison Artillery, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary, the Cape Town Dukes, the Cape Town Rifles, the Cape Field Artillery, Regiment Western Province, 22 Squadron and 35 Squadron.

The parade starts at 10am from the Castle of Good Hope.

As a result of the parade, various streets will be closed in the centre of the city from 5am until 3pm.

These include Darling Street (between Buitenkant and Plein streets), Harrington Street (between Darling and Caledon streets), Buitenkant Street (between Caledon and Strand streets), Parade Street (between Darling and Caledon streets), Corporation Street (between Darling and Caledon streets) and Adderley Street (between Darling and Strand streets).

Organisers of the Pride March said they were disappointed at the city’s decision to change their traditional route, but this would not dampen the celebratory mood.

The march is the culmination of the Cape Town Pride Festival, which aims to celebrate the diversity and awareness around issues impacting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex communities.

The Pride March will start at Gallows Hill Traffic Department at noon, head up Somerset Road to Clyde Road, into Somerset Road, left into Ebenezer Road and right into Prestwich Street where it will end at the entrance to Cobern and Liddle streets.

Genevieve le Coq, stage management and artist relations organiser for Cape Town Pride, said the marchers would be thinking of their brothers and sisters in Uganda, victims of a new anti-gay law that would see gay people jailed.

Despite concerns about Uganda, Le Coq said there would be a party atmosphere tomorrow with floats and people dressed in an array of colourful outfits.

The Pride Fair will take place at De Waterkant Gay Village, with local artists, DJs, belly dancers, stalls, food and drink.

The fair starts at 1.30pm and ends at 8pm. The entry fee is R30.

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Cape Argus