The rainbow flag, representing the LGBT community, fluttered high in the snow-capped mountains of Antarctica as a group of researchers took the message far and wide to the end of the world. By Shikha Pushpan
While June is marked as the National Pride Month in US every year, Antarctica became party to the celebrations this time, thanks to a group of researchers.
About 133 scholars (among whom 10 identify themselves as LGBT) are stationed at the McMurdo Station in Antarctica for studying astrophysics, glaciology, earth sciences, and other disciplines. The group hosted a series of events, such as hoisting the signature flag, planning marathons of the Ru Paul’s Drag Race, and organising movie nights and a gay bar night, to mark the continent’s first Pride celebrations last week. The events were mostly planned by researchers Evan Townsend and Scott Waldron. They also plan to host a small parade around the main building of the station, 850 miles from South Pole.
“Why not take this photo and let people see that there’s queer representation — even at the end of the earth,” Waldron was quoted as saying to New Now Next. With residents at the Mc Murdo Station celebrating the Pride Month, this is the first ever year that Pride has officially been celebrated across all seven continents.
However, in the past too, several remote locations had joined in the celebrations. The Falkland Islands, a British oversees territory, marked its first Pride parade in 2013. It went on to legalise same-sex marriage a few years later in 2017.
Guam, another remote island, located in the Pacific Ocean, has been celebrating Guam Pride March & Beach Festival since 2016. The celebrations include featured performers and personalities from across Asia, live music, carnival rides, and food trucks.