Tokyo Rainbow Pride 2012

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Tokyo Rainbow Pride 2012

Tokyo's Gay Pride parade has had a troubled history since the first one was held back in 1994, plagued by internal conflicts, public indifference and a conspicuous lack of, well, pride. That all looks set to change this month, when a new group launch their own LGBT celebration – and while previous parades were held during the dead zone of the August Obon weekend, this one comes right in the middle of Golden Week. There'll be live music and market stalls in Yoyogi Park during the day, with the parade itself departing at 2.30pm and wending its way through central Shibuya and Harajuku before returning to the park for an Ayumi Hamasaki singalong. Organisers are predicting that up to 5,000 people will show up, and they're encouraging everyone to be as flamboyant as possible: in the words of the bilingual website, 'The more people who dress up, the better the party!' Hear, hear.

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