Nestled in the Spring Gardens, just behind the Royal Vauxhall Tavern, hundreds of gays and lesbians gathered in the sun to partake in what I can only describe as ‘a schools sports day gone ϋber gay’.
Being my first gay sports day, I was unsure about what to expect, AND was pleasantly surprised. After exiting Vauxhall station and teetering nervously past the gaggle of homeless men that seemed to have been politely removed from their sunny drinking spots in the park, we ventured through the gates, almost drawn like moths to a flame to the cheap and fluorescent wigs worn by many.
Whilst the sporting events (and performances) are unlikely to get our Olympians fearing the competition, the laughs and entertainment factor would certainly add a stylish vibe to the half built stadium in Stratford.
Gathered on the mound behind the RVT hundreds of gay and gay friendly folk flocked together to cheer on such teams as ‘Kylie’s Bums’, the ‘Green Fairies’ and the ‘Prissy Queens of the Knoll’ competing in events such as the 50 metre mince, drag relay and the much anticipated handbag toss, all whilst raising much needed funds for the GMFA, Vauxhall City Farm and Friends of Spring Gardens.
Both Kylie Minogue and matriarch of the day, rugby sensation Ben Cohen provided items for a charity auction held at the RVT in an effort to further fund the work of the GMFA (Gay Mens Health Charity).
Never before have I seen so many drag queens, trannys and leather chaps in daylight. The weather was largely favourable, the beer flowed beautifully and the BBQ was the perfect ingredient to aide in the recovery from a big bank holiday Sunday night.
I can safely say that I will be returning next year, arriving early with a gourmet picnic hamper, or (more likely) greasy box of fried chicken and buckets of champagne in order to claim my place by finish line. Better still, perhaps we could rope the SoSoGay crew into competing. Mincing and tossing (...handbags) comes naturally to this loveable group and I’m sure we could give Kylie’s Bums a run (or egg and spoon race) for their money.