Sydney’s famous ‘gaybourhood’ streets will come alive with street dining, pop-up bars, free performances and celebrations at Sydney WorldPride festival hub Pride Villages.
Crown and Riley Streets will become home from 24 February to 5 March 2023 to daily stalls, dining and bars, with Crown Street also hosting performances from local and international talent, including iconic Eurovision winner Conchita Wurst, self-love superstars Big Thick Energy and Australia’s Queen of Cabaret Trevor Ashley.
Sydney WorldPride’s beverage partners including Little Creatures, Johnnie Walker, Absolut, Squealing Pig and Archie Rose will all have pop up bars for visitors and locals alike to enjoy.
More than 20 local businesses – including much-loved shops and venues the Riley Hotel on Riley Street, the Burdekin and Stonewall on Oxford Street, and High Heels on Crown Street – will extending their footprint onto the street to allow patrons additional space to connect with friends and enjoy the vibrant atmosphere.
Universal Hotels Chief Operating Officer Richie Haines said: “The activation of Pride Villages for Sydney WorldPride is fantastic not just for the Oxford Street neighbourhood and its businesses, but for the whole city!
“The whole Universal Hotels team is looking forward to Sydney taking its mantle as a truly global city across the festival period – and Pride Villages will be a big part of that.”
Business Sydney Executive Director Paul Nicolaou said: “Pride Villages and the Sydney WorldPride festival more broadly will provide a much-needed boost to small businesses, including bars, restaurants, and tourism operators. This injection will also stimulate the local economy and help attract more visitors and customers to our city.”
On 4 to 5 March, the final weekend of Sydney WorldPride, Oxford Street, will be transformed into a street party to celebrate the 45th anniversary of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. During both days of the all-ages Oxford Street Party, the American Express Oxford Street Stage will feature free performances by Australian talents including Vassy, HANDSOME, Haiku Hands and Chela.
On the final weekend, a Community Hub will be open on Oxford Street. Run by community organisations, the hub and will be a place for community members to engage and connect with a range of LGBTQIA+ organisations.
Sydney WorldPride Chief Executive Kate Wickett said: “Pride Villages will be the heart of the Sydney WorldPride, taking place in the spiritual home of Sydney’s LGBTQIA+ community.
“Pride Villages is the realisation of a vision we have had from the outset – to bring together the LGBTQIA+ community, Sydneysiders, visitors, businesses and performers, in an inclusive experience for everyone.”
Pride Villages has been made possible thanks to a $3.5million grant from the NSW Government.