18 May Rainbow on the Reef returns bigger and brighter in 2023
The success of last year’s event has inspired an even better return in 2023, with a weeklong
celebration of pride taking place from June 2 to 10.
After their inaugural event last year, the team of volunteers at Rainbow on the Reef have
decided to take their 2023 event to new heights.
“We have mixed things up a little this year, with the festival running over a week and we
have also added some new events and activities. As with last year, we are kicking off the festival at our launch with a movie screening of the heart-warming film, Pride. This will be shown at Gladstone Cinemas on the 2nd June at 7pm, supported by Here for Gladstone,” said the team.
Last year’s turnout was above all expectations at the Fair Day which was a huge success, with 9 out of 10 people reporting that they felt more connected to the community, 7 out of 10
engaging with a new service or organisation as a result of the festival, and over 50 individuals
taking the time to report to the team how safe, connected and supported they felt through the
The creation of the festival is a mammoth effort from a small team of volunteers, taking 12
months to pull together. As well as organising the festival the team also host monthly coffee
catch-ups and barbecues to create safe spaces for the LGBTQIA+ community, and promote
connection and inclusivity.
“This would not be possible without our sponsors, Gladstone Regional Council, Queensland Mental Health Commision, Smit Lamnalco, Stocklands, Shell, Queensland Country Bank, The Reef Hotel and Mantra Hotel.
“Everyone is welcome at the festival; this is a celebration of Pride through identity, where the
community can come together with loved ones, friends, family and be their authentic selves.
We want people to come away feeling proud, supported, connected with new friends and
knowing the Gladstone Region is a wonderful place to live, work, play and holiday.”
Some new additions to this year’s event line-up include a window dressing competition for
Gladstone businesses and a cabaret show with local Drag Queens: Royalty, from Biloela, and
Wanda DeParke bringing her show ‘Priscilla’.
The free, family-friendly fair day will run at the Marina Parklands on June 10, from 11am to
4pm, with live music, drag performers, foods, information stalls and a variety of products and
For the full line-up of activities and events, and to keep up-to-date, head to the Rainbow on
the Reef Facebook page.