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Thursday 09 October 2008

Big Gay Out 2008 - from A to Z

Posted in: Events
By Matt Akersten - 4th February 2008

Peter Kaiser & partner Chris Carter MP at last year's Big Gay Out
Here's's handy alphabetised guide to New Zealand's biggest annual LGBT event coming to Auckland's Point Chev this Sunday.

A is for Activities

Try your luck at Toss the Handbag, the Sack Race, Stiletto Stampede, and the Three-Legged Race! Lots of fun games will happen each hour in front of the main stage.

B is for Bus

Park and Ride - A free bus will be operating onPt Chevalier Road to ferry passengers to and from Coyle Park on the day. Sponsored by Cahill Real Estate and Gay Ski Week, it'll run continuously from 11:30am to 7:30pm.

C is for Classic Cars

They don't make 'em like this anymore! The Gay Classic Car Club will be there on the day with their beloved old autos, right next to the Hospitality Tent.

D is for Dancing

Along with musical entertainment on stage throughout the day, there's also a few dance tents, thanks to Family bar, 42BELOW and George FM. DJs Tenali, Dee, and James Leuii wil spin discs in Family's Dance Tent, plus there's also a Flirt all women's tent hosted by Sarah and her Flirt Police. The all-new 42BELOW Silent-Disco Tent will feature 80s retro - dance the decades away!

E is for Eating

As usual, there'll be a wide variety of food stalls, with many kinds of meals and treats on offer. The food marquee and stalls will as usual be located on the southern side of the park.

F is for Fluffy's Beer Garden

New for this year, Fluffy's Garden is a place to have a quiet drink while checking out the happenings on the main stage.

G is for's Fun Fair

Roll up! Roll up! Join in the fun of Gladiator Jousting, or Hammer Strike - test your strength and make that bell ring! We're also really looking forward to seeing people trying our 'Fly on the Wall' activity… that's where you dress yourself in a Velcro suit, throw yourself up against a wall, and see how high you can get! See you there in the middle of the stalls area on the eastern side of the park.

H is for Hounds

The Big Gay Out is one of those rare gay events when your four-legged friends are welcomed… but remember, all dogs must be kept on a leash and at least 10 metres away from the kids' playground. There'll be dog tricks and dog obedience shows in front of the main stage during the day.

I is for Information

Not sure where to go or what's going on when? The official Big Gay Out Ambassadors will be wandering around the park giving out site plans and providing information and assistance.

J is for Jumping

The Sack Race is happening in front of the Main Stage from 1:15pm. Go on, challenge your friends and don't be afraid to make a fool of yourself!

K is for Kids' activities

It's a family day, so the children haven't been forgotten. Kiddies can sing along with Midget the Clown by the food marquee from 12:30 until 2pm, and there's the cool children's playground in the middle of the park.

L is for Live reports

If you can't make it to the Big Gay Out, will once again bring you live online reports on all the happenings in Coyle Park, updated throughout the day. We'll also have our Big Gay Out Photo Gallery online in the evening.

M is for the Marquis Condoms Stage

There's a huge number of performers gracing the main stage through the day. We're most looking forward to the last hour and a half, from 5pm. Buckwheat will present two Latino Boys demonstrating their Latin dancing, then the Finale Girls will do their shows, Cindy of Samoa will sing live, and Pulse - a four-piece covers group - will sing high-energy hits from 6:30 - 7pm.

N is for Numbers

"Depending on the weather, I think we're going to see a vast increase on last year's numbers," says Big Gay Out organiser Jonathan Smith, "because there are more activities on stage and in front of the stage, and we've got over 55 stalls, which is the largest number we've ever had. I think we'll get over 10,000 people this year."

O is for the Outdoors

Even if it's cloudy, remember to wear sun tan lotion. Get your sun hat on and drink lots of water - we don't want you to dehydrate.

P is for Police

The New Zealand Police's Diversity Liaison Officers will again be out in force this year, but instead of just recruiting folks from their caravan, all thirty of them will be mixing amongst the crowd as official Big Gay Out volunteers. So don't be shy - say hi!

Q is for Questions

Guys, please find time to head to the middle of the park and complete the Gay Auckland Periodic Sex Survey (GAPSS), as the NZ AIDS Foundation needs to gather confidential information to help them in the ongoing fight against HIV/AIDS. It's also a great opportunity to learn and think a little more about your own sex life… or lack of!

R is for Raffles

A prize draw to support LGBT phone counselling service OUTLine will take place in front of their stall at 4pm, and the Guy Love / Girl Love prize raffle draw will be in front of their stall at 6pm. If you buy tickets, remember to be there for the draws or you might miss out on your fabulous prize!

S is for Safe Sex Poster Boys

The NZ AIDS Foundation's condom-crusading poster boy crew will be on stage at 2:15 and 5:30pm, and a hot photo opportunity with them is available in the Gay Men's Health Marquee from 3:30pm.

T is for Toilets

Don't worry - there'll be plenty of pit stops around the park… check your Big Gay Out map (available from volunteers as you enter the park) for the nearest ones to you.

U is for Underwear

Get your cameras ready for a special Ink'd Underwear Fashion show on the Main Stage at 3:30pm…

V is for VIPs

MPs, celebrities, notorious drag queens, Shortland Street stars… so many of them come to the Big Gay Out! One of the best places to spot them is around and inside GABA & NZAF's Hospitality Marquee, where Labour MP Chris Carter and his husband Peter cut their Civil Union cake last year as the Prime Minister looked on.

W is for Weather

Here's hoping for a nice sunny day! If in doubt, check here at  before you leave for the park, as any cancellation will be posted here first! And the Girl Love and Guy Love Weather Angels will film live 'Nipple-O-Meter' weather reports in front of their stall at 2:45pm.

X is for eX-spotting

The Big Gay Out is an awesome opportunity to stalk your ex's and see who they're hanging out with now! But be ready with a polite (but dismissive) smile if the unthinkable happens and you accidentally make eye contact…

Y is for Youth

Young LGBT people's social and support network Rainbow Youth will have a couple of stalls at the Big Gay Out, staffed by friendly volunteers who can let you know about the many regular events happening around Auckland for people under 27 years. Go and say hi.

Z is for Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…

Hey, wake up! If you've still got some energy after a busy Big Gay Out, head along to the official Recovery Party from 7pm until Midnight at Kiss Bar (309 K' Road). With their Fluffy and Ultra DJ's and tasty snacks, it'll be the perfect way to top off the day.

See you at the Big Gay Out, at Coyle Park in Auckland's Point Chev from 12 noon until 7pm on Sunday 10 February.

Quick the link below for all the official Big Gay Out information.

Matt Akersten - 4th February 2008