Join The 2020 ParadeJoin The Parade


The 42nd Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade will be held on Saturday 29th February 2020 from 7pm to 11pm.

Born from a single night of political protest in 1978, the annual Parade has grown into a dazzling spectacle of creative self-expression, with hundreds of thousands of supporters lining the streets. This year we’re expecting approximately 190 floats and over 12,000 participants to be dancing down the Parade route, which travels from Oxford Street, via the iconic Taylor Square and Flinders Street, to Moore Park.

The Parade is a global beacon of diversity and inclusion with the aim to raise the visibility of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex communities. Whether you’re a Parade veteran or first-timer, whoever you are, whoever you love, the Parade is a spectacular event which brings us all together.

Please ensure that you have read all the information below and the 2020 Parade Entrant Guidelines before submitting your application online.

Application submissions are now closed for the 2020 Parade.‚Äč


Mardi Gras' theme for 2020 is... WHAT MATTERS!

In 2020, WHAT MATTERS most is making your voice heard.

Mardi Gras started in the spirit of protest, and it is in that same spirit we want you to tell us WHAT MATTERS.

WHAT MATTERS to you? What are you willing to fight for? Who will you fight for, and what are you going to do?

We’ve come so far, and we know there's so much further to go together.

Acknowledgement of the First Nations land that we meet on. Affirming trans and gender diverse identities. Respect for the pioneers of the past, having the big conversations of today, inspiring the leaders of the future. Shining a spotlight on LGBTQI rights across the Asia-Pacific region. Inclusion, empathy, sustainability, belonging.

Across the festival there are countless opportunities to share what is important to you. From art parties, to thought-provoking panels, to chance meetings on crowded dance floors, take these Mardi Gras moments to focus on WHAT MATTERS right now for LGBTQI people.

Together, we create the communities we live in, and united we can fight for the issues that matter to us.

For Mardi Gras 2020, we’re speaking out about WHAT MATTERS.

The Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade is a platform for LGBTQI communities to celebrate who they are and to communicate a message relevant to the LGBTQI communities, as well non-LGBTQI organisations to communicate a message of support for LGBTQI people.

1.    To be eligible to enter the Parade, you must meet one of the below:

•    LGBTQI’s – An entry by LGBTQI individuals, community groups or organisations primarily involving LGBTQI people. Organisations must be able to prove their main aim is to serve or include the LGBTQI communities.
•    Non-LGBTQI’s – An entry by individuals, group or organisations who do not identify as LGBTQI but supports the rights, achievements, culture and aspirations of the LGBTQI communities. These entries must communicate a clear message of support or celebration relating to the LGBTQI communities and must not use an abbreviation of LGBTQI. These entries are not to sell themselves or what they do unless they are directly promoting how they support or celebrate LGBTQI communities or individuals.

2.    All entries must be an accurate representation of the details supplied in their application form. Applications must:

•    Provide a detailed creative concept with visual supporting documents to ensure SGLMG has a clear understanding of the concept, artistic ideas, production values and any messaging/themes
•    Provide detailed drawings of all four sides of the vehicle (if using one), the layout of all participants in relation to the vehicle, and any wording that will be displayed on signage
•    Outline how the entry relates to the 2020 Festival theme

3.    All entries must not be discriminatory, homophobic, biphobic, transphobic, racist, sexist or breach any defamation law. Entries will not be accepted from organisations who have demonstrated any of the above in previous Parades or in their general business.

4.    All entries must meet the messaging, operational, safety and sponsorship guidelines set out by SGLMG. SGLMG reserves the right to refuse participation from entries that have breached Parade regulations in previous years.


1.    Submit your completed Parade Application form online by 5pm Thursday 7 November 2019. This must include the supporting documents for your creative concept.

2.    The Curatorial Committee, comprised of representatives from both SGLMG and our community, will assess all applications based on the below selection criteria:

•    Meeting the eligibility and conditions of entry
•    Providing a well-designed creative concept
•    Ability to plan and deliver the creative concept safely
•    Benefit and relevance to LGBTQI communities
•    Relevance to the 2020 Festival theme

Under no circumstances will SGLMG alter or make exceptions to the selection criteria to match an individual application.

If we receive more applications than our total capacity allows and your application has met the selection criteria, SGLMG may review your application based on previous Parade history and support of LGBTQI communities. Additionally, LGBTQI organisations will receive first preference.

3.    Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their entry on Thursday 21 November 2019.

4.    Successful applicants will need to complete the following steps by Thursday 12 December 2019:

•    Submit payment for the Parade entry fee
•    Consult with SGLMG if there may be any changes to the entry. Only minor changes that do not impact the entry’s ability to meet the selection criteria may be accepted.

Successful applicants must also provide additional information related to their Parade entry (e.g. driver details) by Sunday 5 January 2019 and attend the Parade Entrants Briefing session in mid February. This session is mandatory for all Entrants and at least one representative from the group must attend. The SGLMG Parade team will review logistics, safety regulations and other important information, as well as provide the necessary registration or accreditation paperwork required for the event day.


SGLMG charges a small fee to Entrants to meet a small proportion of the core costs of staging the Parade. Fees are set according to the organisation type/size and number of participants in the entry.

Payment is only required for successful applications and must be paid by Thursday 12 December 2019. Final acceptance into the Parade will not be granted until your entry fee payment has been received by SGLMG. This fee is non-refundable.


What SGLMG will do:
•    Assess whether an Entrant and their entry aligns to the selection criteria and core values of the Parade
•    Assess an Entrant on their creative concepts and production standard
•    Consult with Entrants to realise their creative potential
•    Work with an Entrant to maximise the impact of their messaging to audiences
•    Work towards delivering a Parade that is designed to inspire, excite and challenge audiences
•    Communicate clearly and apply the same measures and treatment to all entries
•    Identify any elements that may require expert advice
•    Respond to queries in a timely manner

What SGLMG won’t do:    
•    Censor counter viewpoints
•    Allow illegal activities or ambush marketing
•    Allow messages that discriminate or may cause harm to others

What SGLMG expects from Entrants:
•    Participate and be open to consultation with the SGLMG team
•    Adhere to criteria, sponsorship, operational guidelines and instruction before and on Parade day
•    Honour your agreement with us; your parade entry is what you said it would be
•    Attend compulsory briefings such as the Entrant Briefing Day
•    To use the available resources to produce a visually enticing entry
•    Businesses and government entries must set a high artistic standard
•    The Parade is a protest and a celebration that is world renowned and belongs to a creative and vibrant community. All entrants are expected not just to take part, but to contribute to the artistic and political goals of SGLMG and help create an event that is world standard.
•    Show respect, listen and follow requests from SGLMG staff and volunteers.

Please note: The Parade is designed as a safe space for participants from all walks of life.  Any inappropriate behaviour (such as verbal abuse or of threatening nature) will not be tolerated and will result in an entry being removed from participating in the Parade.

Need some general creative or production advice on your concept before submitting your application?
Attend our Parade Creative Ideas Day at the Mardi Gras Workshop (215 Euston Road, Alexandria NSW) on Saturday 19 October 2019 between 11am to 2pm. This free session will feature guest speakers sharing their Parade tips and giving construction or materials advice for float, costume, prop making.
We are also excited to announce that our Creative Community Access Program will be returning to the Mardi Gras Workshop. The workshop will be accessible to all successful community applicants. Details about the program will be confirmed in the upcoming months so stay tuned.
If you would like more information or have any questions, please contact the Parade team via:

•    Email: parade@mardigrasarts.org.au
•    Phone: (02) 9383 0900