CORK Olympian Aoife Cooke is the grand marshal of this year’s Cork LGBT+ Pride Festival.
Cooke, from Ballincollig, qualified to compete in the Tokyo Olympics marathon, on August 7, after storming the Cheshire Marathon earlier this year.
She is an active member of the Cork LGBT+ community, having worked with the Gay Project and LINC, facilitating Couch-to-5k and at-home fitness programmes.
Cork Pride chairperson, Clive Davis, said: “We’re delighted to have a role model like Aoife in the Cork LGBT+ community and to recognise her amazing achievements by welcoming her as this year’s Cork LGBT+ Pride Festival grand marshal.
“Her dedication to running and to health is an inspiration for many in the community, and we couldn’t be prouder of her.”
Cork LGBT+ Pride Festival takes place over nine days this year, from July 24 to August 1, with a variety of Covid-19-safe in-person and virtual events.
Aoife will be spending the next number of weeks altitude training in Utah, in the U.S, before flying to Japan for the Olympic Games. Before leaving for Utah, Cooke said: “I’m very honoured to be asked to be the grand marshal of the Cork Pride Festival 2021.
“The theme of this year’s Cork LGBT+ Pride Festival is ‘Together Apart’. At the time Cork Pride takes place, I’ll be in Tokyo preparing for the Olympic Marathon, so I can’t be there in person, but if this past year has proven anything, it’s that we can be together apart.”
Cork Pride events co-ordinator, Konrad Im, said: “Last year, we were proud to have been able to deliver a comprehensive and reimagined offering of events online that were amazing. However, we’re looking forward to getting some of our events back to safe in-person formats this year, to welcome those who might not be in a home environment where they can seek support through the online format.”
The events listing will soon be available in the Cork Pride magazine, and on social media. For updates, check out corkpride.com.