A Pride Parade Glossary


Pride is here again, a celebration that includes all the different LGBT groups that march in the parade. But what is a drag queen, what is a leather daddy and why do they march? What follows is a glossary of terms.

Bears: larger gay men who sometimes project an image of rugged masculinity. The term was popularized by Richard Bulger when he founded Bear Magazine in 1987. Bears celebrate secondary male sexual characteristics, according to gay activist Jack Fritscher, including “facial hair, body hair, proportional size and baldness.” Younger bears are referred to as cubs.

Drag Queen/King: a person who expresses through performance after dressing in wild costumes, big wigs and/or crazy makeup for comic, dramatic or satirical effect. Performances range across lip-syncing, singing, dancing and pageant participation. The most notable drag queen, a black trans activist named Marsha P. Johnson, had a prominent role in the Stonewall Riots of 1969. It’s because of Johnson and other POC queer activists like her that we celebrate Pride.

Dykes on Bikes: a chartered, lesbian, motorcycle club, fiercely independent and self-reliant in do-it-yourself and feminist traditions. Members of Dykes on Bikes always lead the Pride parade — initially for logistical reasons, later as a strong sign of defiance, empowerment, liberation and pride. Dykes on Bikes made its grand debut at the San Francisco Pride parade in 1976 and have never slowed down since.

Leather Daddy: a term re-popularized by Lana Del Rey’s 2012 album Born to Die.

Leather daddies are generally older men who wear leather garments inspired by military and police uniforms. Leather culture began in the late 1940s and stemmed from a highly masculine motorcycle culture.


Otter: a somewhat lanky, hairy man, who may or may not have a bit of muscle. Think Armie Hammer in Call Me By Your Name. The trope of assigning gay folk different animals with which to identify originated with Advocate writer George Mazzei’s 1979 article “Who’s Who in the Zoo?” Sadly, some of Mazzei’s funnier stereotypes, such as cygnet swans, gazelles and marmosets, did not survive into the 21st century.

Twink: a stereotypically beautiful, slim, young, gay man who flaunts his beauty like a 21st-century Dorian Gray. Think Timothée Chalamet in Call Me By Your Name or Adam Rippon or Troye Sivan. A recent New York Times article claimed 2018 is “the age of twink” but, as history shows, a preference for gorgeous, slender (usually white) men has always been strong in the LGBT community.



All that aside, most Pride attendees are just ordinary people, so many won’t fit into any of these categories. It’s important to attend Pride knowing this isn’t simply a party thrown for giggles, it’s a celebration of each other and our ability to overcome hatred and injustice. You’re encouraged to join the dance.



Capital City Pride 2018


Parade in downtown Olympia

Festival at Heritage Park, Fifth Ave. SW, Olympia




June 7-10





Oly Arts Pride Guide Online

Jesse Morrow and Nicholas Main play Harper and Prior in SPSCC's Angels in America.

Better Angels: The Great Work Arrives

THEATER REVIEW by Christian Carvajal for OLY ARTS What an inspiring, majestic mountain...

A Pride Reading List — From Orca Books

The following recommended reading list was provided by Orca Books in Olympia for Pride...

Lauren O’Neill Cohosts Capital City Pride

By ALEC CLAYTON for OLY ARTS Singer, actor and all-around funny lady Lauren O’Neill is...

Elizabeth Lord to Cohost Capital City Pride

By ALEC CLAYTON for OLY ARTS Olympia’s master of storytelling, the one and only...

Headliners for Pride: The Caravan of GLAM

By ALEC CLAYTON for OLY ARTS Headlining on this year’s Capital City Pride entertainment...

Teresa Guajardo Chosen for Pride Day Award

By ALEC CLAYTON for OLY ARTS Olympia counselor and LGBTQ activist Teresa Guajardo has...

A Pride Parade Glossary

By JONAH BARRETT for OLY ARTS Pride is here again, a celebration that includes all the...

Leslie Cushman: 2018 Pride Activist of the year

By Alec Clayton for OLY ARTS Leslie Cushman is the 2018 Pride Activist of the year....

Capital City Pride 2018 – Performance and Event Schedule

COMPLETE SCHEDULE OF EVENTS OVERVIEW Capital City Pride hosts the largest small-town...

Jakes on 4th Is Pride Party Central

By ALEC CLAYTON  Jakes on 4th is, as it has been, “Pride Party Central” in Olympia....

The Pride Movement in the United States

By OLY ARTS STAFF History shows that in every society and culture, human beings have...

Emma González Honored by Capital City Pride

By Yvonne Joyce for OLY ARTS “My name is Emma González. I’m 18 years old, Cuban and...

Capital City Pride Hosts Annual Olympia Parade and Festival 2018 Theme: “Live. Love. Be.”

By OLY ARTS STAFF Capital City Pride hosts the largest small-town pride festival in the...

2017: Capital City Pride Event Schedule

by OLY ARTS staff PRIDE POWER-UP Thursday, June 15 9 p.m.   Dance Party – Jake’s on...

2017: Pride Proclamations — Pride for Everyone

by OLY ARTS staff Capital City Pride is the culmination of the month-long celebration of...

Anna Schlecht

Honoring Anna Schlecht

Capital City Pride 2017 will be the first such celebration in decades without local...

2017: Pride Overview

by Molly Gilmore for OLY ARTS “Resist hate. Celebrate love.” That’s the theme of...

2017: Celebrating Love, Resisting Hate: Interviews with Pride Leaders

by Ned Hayes for OLY ARTS Capital City Pride celebrates 26 years in 2017, and with this...

To find out more about CAPITAL CITY PRIDE, visit CapitalCityPride.net





Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



2 + 3 =