Amsterdam Sails Into Pride, Singapore Draws Record Gay Crowds
August 8, 2004
By 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff
Pride erupted into raucous celebrations this weekend on
opposite sides of the world.
In Amsterdam, the annual Pride parade took the form of a
flotilla of boats and barges down the city’s canals.
More than 350,000 people lined the canals and crowded
onto bridges to watch the themed boats go by. Each vessel was sponsored by an
LGBT community group or club and by tradition the passengers had to perform an
act in line with the central theme. This year it was ‘Amsterdam Pride goes
Amsterdam has a reputation as the world’s most gay
friendly city although the growth of Pride celebrations elsewhere in Europe
has resulted in fewer foreign tourists in Amsterdam.
The celebration wrapped up with a massive street party.
As Amsterdamers made their way home, on the other side of
the globe, Asia’s biggest gay party was just beginning in Singapore.
Gay sex is illegal in Singapore, but over the past few
years officials have been reluctant to prosecute and gays from through Asia
have turned the city state into a key gay tourist spot.
The opening Pride party drew more than 6000 people
according to organizer and regional gay website Fridae.com.
Half of the revelers at the party in the Suntec City
Convention Center were mainly from neighboring countries including Thailand,
Taiwan and Japan.
Even though the government is not prosecuting gays
Singapore has refused to decriminalize homosexual acts because of opposition
from the conservative majority Chinese population as well as from Malay
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