Part 1 Amsterdam Gay Pride Canal Parade, photos by Per Larson 2013

Part 2 Amsterdam Gay Pride Canal Parade, photos by Per Larson

Part 3 Amsterdam Gay Pride Canal Parade, photos by Gio Ogno


Dutch TV recounts Pride

IMG_0697Here the Amsterdam Pride Canal Parade shown in its entirety – nearly four hours – by Dutch TV and on you tube. I’m including two links because some of them appear to be tricky. These links work well: and

Here’s the Dutch national TV link, in Dutch: This is a tricky link. Click the big screen and you’ll be a black circle with a bar (and no play); but then click the third in the column of four small screens to the left – and you’ll get the version in English.

This Dutch TV version is narrated by an American who’s been living in Amsterdam 20 years. The binational gay community is large here. We know many BiNat couples – perhaps a natural magnetism at play here? Come to Amsterdam for a husband – they were the first after all to make marriage legal, 12.5 years ago. In fact one female couple celebrated their 12.5 years of marriage on a small boat fully dressed in pink wedding gowns!

The narration is truly international – and educational. While the Dutch love a good party – and this is probably the best in the world – they feel an obligation to lead the world. Every parade highlights at the beginning some nation who has been particularly abusive in the past year. Iran had its year. This year is the year of Russia – and Putin. You’ll learn much from the narration about the state of gay rights around the world. The parade itself by including employers and numerous ministers in the government plus the police, firemen, and the Royal football team seeks to show by example that gay people are everywhere – and that they ‘re people like everyone else.

The Dutch have a huge problem stemming from their generous immigration policies. Third world countries have been streaming in, largely Muslim, for the taxes & benefits. But they are slow in giving up their hatreds and violent ways of solving human conflict. The Dutch are having none of that. They have a separate ministry in the government seeking to eradicate discrimination against gay people. And the entire government obviously is behind this monument to gay pride and rights – the Amsterdam Pride Canal Parade.

Canal Parade, with Pride

We’re here one mo’ time to bring you pix, highlights and background of Amsterdam’s largest gay event of the year.

No other event equals its impact on the het world. For most of  those watching the parade come from all sectors of Dutch society – and all parts of the world.

What do they see? the Dutch see people having a great time, with style – which is valued here immensely. The world sees the Dutch spectators enjoying this event every bit as much as the gays in it. And the world sees boats sponsored by most of the major employers in the NL. And it is through employer gay groups – and employers wishing to retain valued gay employees – that the het world got to know gay people, their wants, and their needs.

This is a dimension that’s missing from most of the USA pride parades. Perhaps it’s the distancing given by having the marchers on boats. One thing is for sure: the participants on the boats are giving back something the spectators love – a great show. And along with that candy coating come a lot of very important messages about who people are, that we are everywhere, and that we are of all colors of the rainbow.

Gio & I will be on the press platform at 424 Prinsengracht. Text me things you spot in the course of the parade. And I’ll be compiling the photos and thoughts tomorrow and during the following week.

I started while here because of the gay gallery openings that launched pride. But in many ways the canal parade is Amsterdam’s greatest art event of the year – one of the greatest art installations of the world. In this event art imitates life – and life imitates art. Who knows? perhaps in this event life becomes art, and art becomes life – a vibrant, joyful, stylish life style called gay life.