The organisers of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras are adamant the festival’s iconic Parade will go ahead on March 5, despite the extreme weather currently battering the city.
The 2022 Mardi Gras Parade kicks off at the Sydney Cricket Ground at 6pm on Saturday night, with the Bureau of Meteorology, forecasting the day to be partly cloudy with a 70% chance of rain, most likely in the afternoon and evening with the possibility of thunderstorms.
Mardi Gras said in a statement: “The forecast for Parade day is looking much clearer than it has been recently.
“So we are confident that we will once again unite for a dazzling Parade experience. There have been many times over the last 44 years where it has rained on Parade night. And that has never stopped our communities from coming together to celebrate. Rain or shine, the Parade will forge ahead.
“We have detailed safety plans already in motion to help us adjust to whatever Mother Nature has in store. This could be as simple as pausing the Parade train for a time if we are experiencing a heavy downpour.
“If we experience extreme conditions, like thunderstorms, that create a safety risk for our marchers and participants in the Parade and/or spectators we will assess the risk, refer to our safety plans, and take the appropriate action.”
Mardi Gras also advised punters to “pack a poncho” for the Parade as open umbrellas are not permitted inside the SCG.
“We recommend waterproof mascara and fabulous raincoats,” the organisers concluded. “See you on Saturday!”
The Parade will unite more than 6500 marchers across 160+ glittering floats with a star-studded line-up of special guests. The display of colour, art and movement will take over the SCG as crowd-favourites 78ers, Dykes on Bikes, First Nations and more come together for Mardi Gras’ night-of-nights.
Select kiosks at the venue will be selling the Absolut Thirst Trap, this year’s signature Absolut Passionfruit-flavoured, Mardi Gras cocktail. $2 from every cocktail sold will be going back to the community, with donations being made to the Bobby Goldsmith Foundation and ACON.
Archie Rose will also serve two gin and Australian botanical-based canned cocktails and Signature Dry Gin will be available to party-goers throughout the evening.
Mardi Gras attendees will also be able to sip wines from Treasury Premium Brands, including Squealing Pig.
Lion’s fruitiest beer, Little Creatures, will be the official brew of the night.
If you are unable to get to the SCG the Parade will be exclusively broadcast on all ABC channels from 6:30pm.