Disney will sponsor ‘Gay Days’ celebration in Paris

After years of pretending not to see the presence of extremely popular and colorful “gay days” parties at its theme parks, Walt Disney Co. has agreed to host its first official event in Paris.

Disneyland Paris will host Magical Pride on June 1, and the one-day, two-night celebration will feature a party, a special Magical March of Diversity Parade, and the usual assortment of photo ops with the various characters that Disney fans know and love.

“Gay Days” have been a tradition at Disney parks in the U.S. since the early 1990s when groups of friends decided to go to Disney World in Orlando together while wearing red shirts. Wearing a unifying color was meant to create visibility and show solidarity.

That tradition has grown into a full-fledged social extravaganza, with tens of thousands of people coming to the park while wearing red shirts, as well as attending satellite parties, conventions, and networking events. A similar celebration takes place every year at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif.

Related: PHOTOS: Seeing Red With Gay Days At Disneyland

Neither the Orlando nor the Anaheim parties are recognized by Disney, although the company makes no efforts to shut down the events, which do not use the actual Disney name but frequently reference the theme parks. This policy of  “tolerance,” but not an endorsement, has led to various protests by famously anti-fun organizations like One Million Moms; in 2013, the Florida Family Association flew an airplane through the skies above Orlando, warning citizens of the impending event.

Magical Pride launched at Disney Paris in 2014, when it was organized by a group of travel planners and party promoters. As of 2019, Disney management will also assist in planning the event. As with every party at a Disney theme park, official or not, guests are encouraged to bring children.

Ticket prices to the event include hotel rooms, early access to selected attractions in the park, and access to either of the Disney Paris parks (Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park) on the day before or after Magical Pride.

See the GayCities guide to Paris

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