As reported by NBC News, Disney will host its first official LGBTQ pride event on June 1st at the Disneyland Paris theme park. A Walt Disney Company spokesperson commented on the newly announced event, saying “diversity and equality are strong values at Disneyland Paris, and each year, we host millions of visitors regardless of their origins, gender or sexual orientation. We are committed to fostering a welcoming environment for all of our Guests where magic is for everyone.” The event – entitled “Magical Pride” – has been an unofficial event since 2014 – but this year it goes official. Event features include late night park hours as well as “character meet-and-greets, musical performances and a pride-themed ‘diversity parade’.”
On our end, we view this as a positive step in the right direction for the company, and we’d love to see the American parks launch official pride events as well. There have been unofficial “Gay Days” events at Disney parks since the early ’90s, so why not make things official and reap the benefits, which would include:
- Widespread positive word of mouth surrounding Disney theme parks (and the Walt Disney company as a whole).
- Increased attendance numbers from members (and allies) of the LGBTQ community on pride event days AND the surrounding days.
- Opportunities for additional revenue streams through auxiliary paid events at theme parks, at surrounding Disney properties, and even at offsite partnering locations, thereby expanding reach on a nationwide (or even global) scale.
Seems like a win-win-win for Disney to go all in with its support of LGBTQ pride. The company has already been doing some very cool and innovative things, and this takes things to an exciting (and important) new level. We look forward to seeing “Magical Pride” expand to the USA, but in the meanwhile, we’ve got some newfound motivation to make our way over to Paris…