History of First Peoples entries in the Sydney Mardi Gras Parade

Warami! Welcome to the history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander entries in the Sydney Mardi Gras Parade. WARNING: This site contains photographs of a community's history that spans almost 40 years. Some photographs contain images of deceased loved ones, family and friends who are sorely missed. We honour their memory in every day of our lives.

;xNLx;This is a community's site of community-owned and shared, stories and history - the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, transgender, sistergirl, brotherboy, inter-sexed and queer community from Nations wide, their partners and their families.;xNLx;;xNLx;This timeline will always be 'under construction' and dependent on community input. To respond to the timeline and provide your valued feedback, more stories, more knowledge and photographs, please join and post to the facebook public group for this site, by clicking on this link:;xNLx;;xNLx;[Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mardi Gras](https://www.facebook.com/groups/1507173312924165/);xNLx;;xNLx;Project initiation, curation and words, Tim Bishop.

Blackbooty - One Love

The Black Booty float was a flat tray truck, with a mounted lighting rig and sound that carried eight choreographed performers, representing eight different drag identities.

Sweeties for a Treaty

The walking entry was accompanied by high-profile Aboriginal leader, Geoff Clarke, and Aboriginal activist Jack Beetson, to promote reconciliation between Aborigines and other Australians.

Puttin' the L into Mardi Gras

At an Extraordinary General Meeting in 1988, the Board of Sydney Gay Mardi Gras elected to re-name the event, 'Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras'.

60+000 years > The 70's

The affirmative actions of the 1960s social movements in America (Black Power, anti-Vietnam War and worldwide Women's Liberation) inspired the radicalisation of the Gay Solidarity Movement that arrived in Sydney early in the 1970s.

The '78ers

In June of 1978, a night-time celebration followed a morning protest march in the city as Sydney’s contribution to international Gay Solidarity celebrations. Organised by the Sydney Gay Solidarity Group, the evening culminated in a festive procession down Oxford Street to Hyde Park, leaving from Taylor Square at 11pm. The 1500 revellers were later met with unexpected police violence. Fifty-three people were arrested. Aboriginal women, Chris Burke (dec) and Annie Pratten were there in solidarity.


An award-winning walking group at the front of the parade. Lots of flags, colour and movement, a ute with lights and sound and Uncle Max on the back with a fire bucket.

FIRST AUSTRALIANS - House of Blakstar

This was the year the entry was first named, 'First Australians' and that now very familiar black and white banner appeared for the very first time.

Captain Cook and The Endeavour Gay

“Among the glitz and glamour was a pirate ship carrying Captain Crook of Bennelong - who bore an uncanny resemblance to Prime Minister John Howard, who is the MP for the Sydney seat of Bennelong.” (The Age)


Mmm ... Not much is known yet about this entry and there is still some confusion about it, but it definitely happened. Was it The Democrats? Who were the organisers? Not really sure.

Welcome to Country

Following on from the previous year, the Welcome to Country retained its 'first in parade' position.

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