A Double Dose of Gay Celebrations in Buenos Aires
Agentina is a leader in LGBT rights issues in Latin America, and indeed the world. In 2010, the country made same-sex marriage the law of the land. I was fortunate enough to be a witness to the signing of the law, having been there for the simply coincidental G-Networks Gay travel conference going on in July of that year, and invited both as a journalist and conference attendee to the event in the Casa Rosada.
Argentina celebrates its Gay Pride Month in November, as opposed to June, like much of the rest of the world, which uses that time period to coincide with commemorating New York’s 1969 Stonewall Riots. We have written before about November being the gayest month in Argentina in this post.
The main reason for gay pride celebrations in November is to commemorate the founding of Nuestro Mundo, “Our World,” Argentina’s first known gay rights group, in 1967. Among its most famous members was Manuel Puig, the author of the novel Kiss of the Spider Woman. Usually the first or second Saturday of the month, the event starts with a Pride Fair at 3pm in Plaza de Mayo, under the shadows of the Casa Rosada and Evita’s famous balcony.
Known as Orgullo Nacional, the Buenos Aires parade itself starts at about 6pm from in front of the Catedral Metropolitana, once the home church of current Pope Francis I. He’s certainly changed while in Rome, but as Archbishop of Buenos Aires Jorge Bergoglio, he was famous for his strong opposition to advances in LGBT rights Argentina became known for, angering President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, though she has been embarrassingly ingratiating to the Bishop of Rome since he moved across the Atlantic.
The main website for the parade is http://www.marchadelorgullo.org.ar, however, they don’t update it very well, so the best thing is to check the Facebook page for the event on this link.
This year, Gay Pride is Saturday November 15, which is late for the celebration, and actually the third Saturday in November, not the first or second as is usually the case. (As an aside, I am often asked why on a Saturday, and not a Sunday as is the case in the United States and Canada for almost all gay pride celebrations. If you take a close look, almost no country which is officially Catholic has its gay pride celebrations on a Sunday; it’s too much of an insult to the church. That’s why in most of Latin America, and in Italy, the celebrations are for the most part on Saturdays.)
Late or not, the weekend is sure to be a fantastic one, because the pride parade is combined with the Copa de las Americas, or the America Cup, a gay soccer championship which will run from November 13 to the 15th. This means you’ll have the usual excitement for gay pride in Buenos Aires, combined with all the athletic events and other parties, making for an exceptionally fun weekend in Buenos Aires.
You can find out more on all the teams playing on the main website, which includes teams from all over Latin America, ranging from Osos – or Bears – to the team 100% Trans, made of transgender players, and there’s also a women’s division, albeit smaller than the women’s competition. There is also an event Facebook page – which is a personal page rather than a Fanpage. More, in Spanish, is also on this youtube link here. Make sure also to visit the website of Comunidad Homosexual de Argentina, or CHA, which will give you an overview, in Spanish of LGBT rights and history in Argentina.
To help you prepare for your trip to Buenos Aires, for this coming weekend, or any other time, make sure to visit some of the material we have here on gay Argentina. That includes this list of some of my favorite gay and gay-friendly places, which includes my coverage of the most recent G-Networks gay travel conference. My colleague Andrew Collins who runs About.com Gay Travel has a collection of articles on Argentina, and another colleague Ramon Johnson of About.com Gay Life goes into some aspects of gay life in Argentina here too.
And whether you are gay or straight, being in Argentina for gay pride weekend is going to be fun. Drop me a note here on About.com Argentina and let me know how your weekend went!
by Michael Luongo – Argentina Travel Expert
Source – About Travel