Dear Kamloopsians, it is a beautiful time of year! (Yes, I know, despite the heavy forest fire smoke…) We all are in denial that our beloved boating and patio seasons are coming to a close, but I think a few of us are secretly looking forward to seeing our children going back to school, for pumpkin spice lattes, and of course, for some more fun Brewloops events in September.

If you haven’t picked up a newspaper or scrolled through your Facebook timeline recently, it is Pride Week! From drag queens reading to children at the public library, to diversely decorated downtown store window displays, to a LGBTQ2S+ panel discussion, an art exhibition and art crawl at various galleries, and of course, a pride dance and parade – there’s even more events and celebrations to participate in this year’s Pride celebrations. I haven’t even listed all of them, so definitely check out Kamloops Pride’s website here!

I must say that it makes my heart happy to see such an array of color, pride, and diversity all across our beloved, quaint city. I mean, I always say that rainbow is my favourite colour because I can never pick just one color… and there are literally rainbows everywhere I turn my head right now. IT. IS. AMAZING.

In all seriousness, it is so important and wonderful and amazing for our LGBTQ2S+ friends and fellow community members to celebrate and live their best lives. Of course it was not that many years ago when these friends were not fully accepted into our everyday society and had limited rights. For others, living in reservation and fear is an everyday occurrence around the world.

I can’t tell you how incredible it is to look up outside of Kamloops City Hall and see a rainbow flag proudly flapping in the light, hazy breeze. Really, it is a wonderful action from our municipal government.

I can only imagine how wonderful it would feel to be surrounded by like-minded people, to feel accepted, to feel at home during Pride events (and always). I think it goes without saying, but I’ll type these words again – LOVE. IS. LOVE.

Kudos to Kamloops Pride and their team of volunteers for executing such a great lineup of events, cultivating a strong feeling of community, and spreading good vibes this week – and all year long.

I invite you now to put on some rainbow coloured glasses and enjoy these photos that I took this morning. I didn’t manage to capture all of downtown storefronts because there are just so many (YAY) and the smoke was really getting to me (LESS YAY).

I highly encourage you all to take a stroll this weekend, check out at least one of these special events and cheer on everyone marching in the pride parade on Sunday morning! Happy Pride, friends!

Terra Restaurant on the 300 block of Victoria Street

Kamloops City Hall at 100 Victoria Street

Barnacle Records at corner of Victoria and 3rd Avenue

Royal Bank of Canada at 100 block of Victoria Street

Aina’s Organic Spa at 100 block of Victoria Street

Lavender Lingerie at 300 block of Victoria Street

Contential Barber Shop at 300 block of Victoria Street

United Way Church at 400 St. Paul Street

Thompson Rivers Chiropractors on the 500 block of Seymour Street

K-Spin on the 100 block of Seymour Street

Jardines Domaine on the 200 block of Victoria Street

Paper Unicorn on the 400 block of Victoria Street

United Way on the 100 block of Victoria Street

The Art We Are on the 200 block of Victoria Street

The Golden Buddha on 200 block of Victoria Street

House of Carmond Hair Design on 300 block of Victoria Street