The intersection of 3rd and 5th in Fernie in 2018, when it was first painted with rainbow crosswalks. (Image courtesy of Fernie Pride Society)

The intersection of 3rd and 5th in Fernie in 2018, when it was first painted with rainbow crosswalks. (Image courtesy of Fernie Pride Society)

Fernie to get rainbow crosswalks for Pride Month

The intersection of 3rd Ave and 5th Street will have it’s crosswalks painted all the colours of the rainbow

Fernie will once again be getting not one, but four (!) rainbow crosswalks painted for pride month this June.

The intersection of 3rd Ave and 5th Street in Fernie will see all four crossings brightened up so you wont miss them.

“Fernie Pride Society is so excited to repaint the rainbow crosswalks located on 3rd Avenue,” said Courtney Baker of Fernie Pride.

“The sidewalks were previously painted in 2018 and it has far too long since they reappeared.”

Fernie Pride and local youth will be working with the support of the City of Fernie and the Tegan and Sara Foundation to paint the crosswalks.

“Rainbow crosswalks demonstrate the visible commitment that local government and the community have to ensuring that the sexual and gender diversity of all residents and visitors is supported and that inclusion, respect, and equity is a community value.

“These colourful crosswalks are an incredibly important part of a broader vision that signals that Fernie is a safe and welcoming place for LGBTQ2+ people,” said Baker.

“Although the rainbow and the Pride flag are more common now, it was not all that long ago when these symbols were seen rarely or were only found in certain parts of urban centres. Rainbow crosswalks may seem like a fun way to brighten up the community, and they absolutely are, but more importantly, they are a statement that lets people know that hate and homophobia is not welcomed or tolerated in Fernie.”

Baker said that Fernie Pride hoped that the rainbow crosswalks could be redone annually, or even installed permanently in Fernie going forward.

“But until that time, we look forward to brightening up Fernie and are grateful for the support of the queer community and allies in the Elk Valley.”

As part of Pride Month, Fernie Pride is helping organise drag story-time together with the Fernie Heritage Library and the Tegan and Sara Foundation, with the Okanagan’s favourite drag queen Freida Whales joining in the fun.

READ MORE: Fernie Pride to look at inclusivity across Elk Valley



scott.tibballs@thefreepress.ca
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