A record number of participants have registered to be part of the Parade on March 7 -“ over 300 more than last year’s record.

New Mardi Gras has  announced the award of this year’s parade grants. Fifteen groups are benefiting from the awards this year including a group from Victoria who will be celebrating the Nations United theme, a glamorous display of Hollywood gay icons and a Sydney group call The Honeymooners who will be sailing a love boat up Oxford St in recognition of same sex relationships around the world.

With over $18,000 given back to the community as grants this year this is our biggest ever support to assist parade entrants with their floats, New Mardi Gras chair David Imrie said.

We’re determined that this will be not only the biggest but the most spectacular Parade in our history.

Adding to the excitement on the night will be high camp comedienne Joan Rivers who will be ditching the red carpet for a -˜hot pink’ one when she participates as a host of this year’s Parade broadcast on FOXTEL’s Main Event channel from 7.30pm.

Joining hosts Alex Perry, Charlotte Dawson, Julie McCrossin and international air hostess comedian Pam Ann, Rivers will be reporting from a specially made -˜hot pink’ carpet that will mark the starting point for this years’ parade entrants.

Joan’s positioning at the beginning of the world famous street parade will give her unprecedented access to all of this years entrants and under her watchful eye, will ensure that no one will be safe from the -˜queen of mean’s’ caustic tongue.

This year’s party will incorporate an additional venue -“ the Fuse Bar -“ upping the capacity of the party. It will be used as a women’s space, the Girls’ Republic.

In addition a number of new acts have been added to the line-up, including Miami Horror, Glace Chase, Faggot Rooster, Roshani Priddis and the Margaritas.

New Mardi Gras is also running a casting for models to provide a concierge service at Harbour ’09 to ensure that all its partygoers needs are taken care of.

info: For full details of all Mardi Gras events visit www.mardigras.org.au

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