This weekend’s Mardi Gras Parade will have, for the first time in history, a group of surfers taking part and marching along Oxford St with their surfboards.

The year-old Gay Surfers online forum has connected gay surfers from around the world to meet, socialise and plan surf events, and the Sydney chapter has been particularly active. In just a year, the forum has attracted almost 3000 members from around 80 countries. Australia has 650 members, 250 of them surfing Sydney’s surrounding beaches.

“By participating in Mardi Gras, we are showing the public that a healthy diversity exists in both the gay community and the surfing community,” Gay Surfers founder Thomas said.

“As grows, I hope our message of acceptance and understanding spreads throughout the global surfing community. Gay or straight, we all share a passion for the greatest sport in the world.”

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