A ‘Bumpa’ Parade

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Express talks to 2015 Auckland Pride Parade Director Richard Taki (aka Bumpa) to find out more about the 2015 Pride Parade.

How many entries were there last year?

If we include our wonderful volunteers who gathered everyone up at the end then 47!

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Are you expecting an increase this year?

We are expecting an increase for 2015 and are currently sitting at 70 enquiries.

What can we expect from 2015’s ‘Gods & Monsters’ theme?

It’s an opportunity for us to let our inner divinity come out gracefully or run rampant down Ponsonby Road. As a nation we have many deity’s, good and evil, that are part of our fabrication and across our cultural landscape we have many myths and legends, its these I am really excited to see.

Why has the 2015 parade time been pushed back to 7.30pm?

The majority of feedback I’d received about the time was for the parade to be later however I also received feedback about those enjoying the daylight aspect so again we hit twilight where I think it will be a good balance for all.

What was the process behind you reappointment? Did you pitch for the position? 

Just the standard process and yes I pitched.

Why did you want to be the Pride Parade Director again, and why do you think you were chosen? 

I’m extremely proud of our rainbow community, what it represents and what it achieves and what it can achieve. I think I was chosen because I have a history of working on large scale events professionally and negotiating with key stakeholders on many levels, my performance background helps but more importantly my track record in working with Community.

Express received feedback about last year’s parade saying people were expecting more music from the floats and more flesh on display (ala Mardi Gras). Was this an intentional point if difference? Do you feel we need to see any more flesh or hear any more music in the 2015 parade? 

I also received the same feedback and I’m definitely in agreement we need more! It’s a party down Ponsonby Road celebrating who we are.

It can be costly though which I fully understand and some of our community members feel this enormously as I know they can at times struggle just to fund their own organisations. However last parade I was able to assist them with funds, which I’d applied for, via our local boards and I’m hoping I’ll be able to do this again, fingers crossed. Now though is the time to start fundraising, even something as simple as a rainbow cake raffle could pay for your registration fee. I was also able to join business with community, which I’ll be fully engaged in again so that these larger organisations have a direct way of supporting our community.

I receive feedback from many areas and it is my responsibility to try and meet those needs. For me it’s about what works for us as a community and a nation. I am very lucky in that I have an incredible husband and a senior event team of volunteers who are 150% committed to our community so along with them and a very supportive board I’m excited to be back. I think our larger organisations and the companies/businesses involved could definitely make their floats bigger, brighter, louder and sexier. I’ll definitely be getting my sexy on for the parade and invite you all to join me!

Parade registrations officially close on Friday 16 January 2015, but due to limited space may get filled earlier.  To ensure your group or organisation does not miss out, please contact Richard at your earliest convenience on parade@aucklandpridefestival.org.nz

 Article | Oliver Hall

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