PHOTOS: Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras gave major FOMO

Rainbow strut! Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

The Australian LGBTQ+ community came together to celebrate the 44th annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. These pictures showcase the parade in all its glory.

One big party. Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

This year’s festival took place from Feb 18 to March 6 with a full schedule of pool parties, performances, and queer art showcases. 

Giving us major heart eyes. Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

The three main events are fair day, party, and parade. But the party, the giant festival-wide concert, was canceled due to COVID-19. By implementing Coronavirus safe plans, the other events were able to go off without a hitch.

Can we borrow these outfits? Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

The day after the parade the whole thing winds down with the famous recovery party, Laneway.

Celebrating Trans joy. Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

This year’s theme, united we shine, acknowledges attacks on Trans and Gender Diverse communities around the world. But banding together makes the whole LGBTQ+ community shines brighter. “Now is the time for us to unite. This is our time to shine.”

Dykes on Bikes. Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

The Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras all started in 1978, gay celebrations were going on around the world for International Gay Solidarity Day and a small group of protesters took to the streets of Darlinghurst, Sydney to contribute and show their pride.

Parade pa-ride! Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

The protesters were met with police violence and arrests that only reinforced the need, and made them determined to celebrate gay Mardi Gras again next year.

Fighting stigma and looking fabulous! Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

The following months saw more protests and arrests which lead to the Parliament of New South Wales repealing the law that police were using to justify arrests.

Color-coordinated. Photo by Cori Mitchell, Fire & Thunder Photography

This made the first Mardi Gras march a major civil rights milestone for the community, and the following year around 3,000 people marched incident-free.