The Element Club Bar and Grill will be hosting Castlegar’s first gay pride event at the end of the month. Bottoms Up, which goes Aug. 30, will feature burlesque performances, singers, a dance, raffle prizes, and much more.
“We decided to do it because we’ve been wanting to put on a pride event in Castlegar,” said Daniel Ellis, one of the organizers. “The event in Nelson has been going on for awhile – Kootenay Pride. Castlegar is very open and there’s a great facility here with the Element. So we said, ‘let’s do it.'”
The event is a fundraiser for Outlet Castlegar, an organization which offers services for gay, lesbian, and bisexual youth in the area. “They’ve been running for a number of years so we thought we’d give them some recognition for what they’ve done and hopefully make some money for them.”
Ellis says support for the event has been great so far from both the people and the businesses in the area that have donated to the raffle.
Although times have changed somewhat over the last several years, Ellis says that the Castlegar gay community is still mostly closeted.
“Each town has their own flavour,” he said. “We just want to showcase that their are gays in Castlegar and in the Kootenays. We want to be recognized as part of the community at large.”
Tickets are available at the Element, Otter’s Books in Nelson, and J.J.’s Fashions in Trail.