News of: Thursday, January 18 2007,

Amsterdam gay pride canal parade 2007 will have boat for gays until 16

The well-known yearly gay pride tour through the canals of Amsterdam will this year have a special boat for young gays and lesbian: the maximum age is 16 years.

The Amsterdam pride tour consists of a parade of about a 100 decorated boats, each with its own theme. This year, a boat has been announced for minors: the maximum age is 16, the minimum age is 11.
The boat is an iniative of Danny Hoekzema (14 years old) from the village of Bovenkarspel, about 40 km north of Amsterdam. He has organized the boat together with the COC Amsterdam (the COC is the main national gay & lesbian organization in the Netherlands).

Danny is still looking for other gays and lesbians in his age group to join him on the boat. His special website will be online from January 23.

Recent research indicates that gays and lesbians realize they are gay at an increasingly younger age. They experience difficulties in finding children in the same age group, are often not allowed to pubs and clubs, and can not become members of gay dating sites because of age restrictions.

Says Danny: 'You could say that heterosexuals can also not go to clubs etcetera, but they can meet at school, youth parties and youth clubs. We don't have any of that'.

The boat parade will be held on the first Saturday in August, August 4.