On Saturday 2 February, Carlton Baths held its first ever ‘Rainbow Celebration’ event for the LGBTQIA+ community and their allies.
Hundreds of people attended the special 18+ Saturday evening event where they enjoyed a night filled with music, health and fitness, food and fun.
YMCA Victoria in conjunction with City of Melbourne held the event as a part of the Midsumma Festival, for which City of Melbourne is a principal partner. Thanks to the support of City of Melbourne, the event was free and Carlton Baths was able to provide access to everyone, breaking down barriers to physical exercise for the LGBTQIA+ community.
“Rainbow Celebration was a great example of what we try to achieve every day at Carlton Baths; we want to help everyone in the community to feel healthier and happier, and that includes minority groups. The event was a fun and engaging way to achieve this,” said Kieran O’Dwyer, Centre Manager at Carlton Baths.
Rainbow Celebration was coordinated by a group of eight staff from the Y and was supported by the team at Brunswick Baths, who also had a great turn out at their recent Inclusive Gym and Swim Night.
The successful promotion of the event led to over 600 pre-registrations via the Midsumma page, and of these registrations a whopping 375 people attended. The event itself also impressed, with attendees feeling safe and included in a space where people from the LGBTQIA+ community often face additional barriers.
“The event was a favourite of mine for Midsumma. The festival vibe mixed with a pool was a first for me and something I’ll do again and recommend to my friends. Thanks for supporting the queer community and creating a safe space. It was delightful!” said one attendee.
People at the event enjoyed an evening of live entertainment and recreation activities, including:
- Live Music from LGBTIQA+ Inclusive Artists, Willing, Francesca Gonzales and DJ Slam Ross
- Stalls from LGBTQIA+ sport clubs & support services
- Stall from an inclusive artist Michael O’Hanlon
- Swimming in 25m Outdoor Pool with swimming technique classes
- Health and Fitness consultations in the Health Club
- Yoga classes
- A pop up Adrenaline Fitness Challenge
- Raffle to support YMCA Open Doors, an iniative which subsidises access to YMCA programs and services for people in need
- Delicious snacks provided by Chobani, Slim Secrets, Harvest box and Remedy Kombucha
The Y is a proud supporter of the LGBTQIA+ community and we are excited to continue hosting more inclusive and accessible events. Brunswick Baths will be running their second Inclusive Gym and Swim Night on Saturday 23 February. Click here to find out more.