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File:CSD 2006 Cologne 14.jpg

Members of the Cologne CSD 2006

File:Christopher Street Day 1998.jpg

Dancers on a float at the 1998 CSD in Berlin


Float of HUK (an LGBT Christian group) at the 2006 CSD in Berlin


"Kiss In" 2006 in Berlin

Christopher Street Day (CSD) is an annual European LGBT celebration held in various cities across Europe. Only Germany and Switzerland use the term CSD, in other countries, the same kind of event is called Gay Pride or Pride Parade. Austria calls their Pride Parade Rainbow Parade. The most prominent CSD events are in Cologne and Berlin, Germany, and Zürich in Switzerland.

CSD History

The CSD is held in memory of the first big uprising of homosexuals and other minorites against police assaults that took place in New York's Christopher Street in Greenwich Village on June 27, 1969. The so-called Stonewall Riots took place in the bar Stonewall Inn.

New York has celebrated the Christopher Street Liberation Day on the last Saturday of each June since 1970. The first German CSDs took place in Bremen and Berlin in 1979. Other parades before 1979 still had different names. The first documented LGBT parade in Germany was in Münster in April 1972. The first parade in Switzerland was celebrated on June 24, 1978 in Zürich and was called "Christopher-Street-Liberation-Memorial Day."

CSD Today

Almost every large town in Germany celebrates CSD. Due to organizational reasons, the CSDs do not take place on the historic date of June 27, but on different weekends between June and August. On the one hand, CSDs are considered political parades, and therefore also include speeches, political mottos, and attendances and patronages from well-known politicians. On the other hand, CSDs are often compared to carnival processions or techno parades, in which celebrating and partying are the main focus. This is the idea of all gay pride parades: through celebrating, the LGBT community shows that they can be proud of themselves and their lifestyle.

A typical Christopher Street Day Parade includes floats as well as walking groups usually provided by and made up of members of LGBT organizations, but is increasingly used also as a platform for political campaigning and commercial advertising as floats by political parties and commercially sponsored trucks are becoming more common. It is also typical to see many drag queens or women and men (mostly the latter) scantily dressed. BDSM enthusiasts also often participate in CSDs. The parade is usually quite joyous and has a rather upbeat and exciting energy to it. Aside from the standard gay pride parade, there are often whole weeks organized around the CSD weekend with cultural events and festivities.

The growth and the commercialization - in line with de-politicalisation - has led to an alternative CSD in Berlin, the so-called "Kreuzberger CSD" or "Transgenial CSD". Political party members are not invited for speeches, nor can parties or companies sponsor floats. After the parade a festival with a stage for political speakers and entertainers commences.

List of cities hosting a CSD

  • Altötting
  • Augsburg
  • Bad Segeberg
  • Berlin
  • Bielefeld
  • Bonn
  • Braunschweig
  • Dortmund
  • Dresden
  • Düsseldorf
  • Duisburg
  • Essen
  • Erfurt
  • Frankfurt am Main
  • Hagen
  • Hamburg
  • Iserlohn
  • Kassel
  • Kiel
  • Köln
  • Konstanz (CSD Bodensee)
  • Leipzig
  • Lübeck
  • Lüneburg
  • Magdeburg
  • Mannheim
  • Mainz
  • Minden
  • München
  • Nürnberg
  • Oldenburg (CSD Nordwest)
  • Regensburg
  • Rostock
  • Saarbrücken
  • Siegen
  • Stuttgart
  • Trier
  • Warsaw
  • Wien
  • Würzburg
  • Zürich

See also

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:

bg:Гей-прайд es:Orgullo gay eo:Christopher Street Day fr:Gaypride he:מצעד הגאווה it:Gay pride ja:ゲイ・パレード pl:Christopher Street Day pt:Parada do orgulho LGBT tr:Christopher Street Day yi:שטאלץ פאראד zh:骄傲游行