The Original Flag Store Provides Sensational Flags for ALG’s Commercials!
The Original Flag Store adds a burst of colour using sensational purple flags to show case ALG’s newest Lottery Game “GeoSweep” in their commercials.
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Toronto To Host World Pride in 2014
Toronto wins vote to host World Pride bash
Toronto will host World Pride 2014 after winning a vote in Florida by leaders of gay and lesbian organizations around the globe.
The city’s World Pride committee thought they had won after the first vote Sunday, in which Toronto beat Stockholm, 77 votes to 61. The victory eliminated Stockholm but did not reach the two-thirds majority Toronto needed.
“It was a bit of a nail-biting experience,” said chair Mark Singh, about the three-hour wait for the results of a second yes-or-no vote for Toronto’s bid at the InterPride 2009 Conference in St. Petersburg, Fla.
When it was finally announced that the city won a 78 per cent margin of victory, meaning the festival will take place here, the crowd erupted in cheers, said Singh, who was “delighted” by the win.
“There’s so much support and excitement for this,” Singh told the Star.
The world event will be hosted simultaneously with Toronto’s Pride Week in the summer of 2014. The program for the festival includes a parade of nations as part of the opening ceremony and a human rights conference.
Toronto was represented in Florida by a 10-member delegation, including officials from Pride Toronto, organizers of the annual Pride Week, the Toronto Police Service, Pride Week sponsor TD Bank and Tourism Toronto.
The Toronto bid presentation took place Saturday and included addresses by David Whitaker, President of Tourism Toronto and Toronto Police Services LGBT Liaison Officer Constable Thomas Decker.
The committee was unable to complete the presentation after a request for a one-minute extension was denied by Stockholm.
It is now the second loss for Stockholm, Toronto’s main rival for the international political and cultural event, sponsored by gay leaders from around the world, after losing an earlier vote to host World Pride 2012, which London will host.
However, Stockholm’s committee was “very gracious,” and voted in favour of Toronto’s bid after being eliminated, said Singh.
“When it comes down to it, we are still all Pride,” said Singh. “Once the competition is over we go back to being friends.”
Organizers say Pride Week in Toronto last summer generated $100 million in business. Pride Toronto will need some financial support to put on the 2014 event.
Organizers estimate costs of the event will jump to $10 million, compared to the $4 million spent this year, but that would be more than offset by the injection of tourist dollars into the city.
Organizers also anticipate more funding from government and community sponsors, said Singh, adding that the victory may also mean more infrastructure investments into the areas that are very gay-friendly, such as Church-Wellesley.
The provincial government provided $350,000 for this year’s festivities, and Premier Dalton McGuinty has already provided a letter of support for the 2014 bid.
Toronto Pride bidders say the world event could draw an extra quarter-million people.
South Sudan Raises New Flag
South Sudan’s flag raised at independence ceremony
Will Ross describes the scene as the South Sudanese flag is raised in Juba
Tens of thousands of South Sudanese have watched the raising of the new country’s flag at an independence ceremony in the capital, Juba.
Salva Kiir signed the constitution and took his oath of office in front of the jubilant crowds, becoming president of the world’s newest nation.
Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir and UN chief Ban Ki-moon were among dignitaries watching the events.
Sudan earlier became the first state to officially recognise its new neighbour.
The world’s newest nation was born at midnight local South Sudanese time (2100 GMT), the climax of a process made possible by the 2005 peace deal that ended a long civil war.
The south’s independence follows decades of conflict with the north in which some 1.5 million people died.
At the scene
A sea of people filled Freedom Square in Juba, next to the mausoleum of the late John Garang, the rebel leader who led the South Sudanese during the civil war. They waved flags and screamed in happiness as South Sudan officially became with world’s newest nation.
The wild crowds surged forward, dancing for hours in the baking sun. Several people fainted in the heat but the mood was ecstatic. When the giant flag of South Sudan rose on the 30m flagpole, men cried, women ululated and thousands waved flags in a blur of colour.
A host of world leaders spoke on the podium, but the real party was at the back of the site where thousands danced to traditional drum beats.
Saturday’s independence ceremony was held at the mausoleum of the late rebel leader John Garang, who died just months after signing the peace deal that ended Africa’s longest-running conflict.
The BBC’s Will Ross in Juba says people flocked to the event on a baking hot day – some of them climbing trees to get a view.
The Speaker of the South Sudan Legislative Assembly, James Wani Igga, read out the Proclamation of the Independence.
Crowds then cheered as Sudan’s national flag was lowered and the new flag of South Sudan was raised as trumpets played the new national anthem.
Afterwards the master of ceremonies told the crowd that President Kiir has decided not to hand over the flag of the Republic of Sudan.
“It shall be kept in the archives of South Sudan in recognition of the common history that we have lived together,” he told the crowd.
Our correspondent says people in the crowds said it was a moment to celebrate but they were also talking about the many lost relatives who died during the war.
“Our martyrs did not die in vain… We have waited for more than 56 years for this day,” President Kiir said.
“It is a day that will be forever engraved on our hearts and minds,” he added, before extending an amnesty to those who have taken up arms against the government of South Sudan.
There are at least seven active rebel groups in the south, one of the many challenges the new country faces.
Mr Bashir, who agreed the 2005 peace deal with the Sudan People’s Liberation Army (SPLA), also spoke at the ceremony congratulating his “southern brothers”.
“The will of the people of the south has to be respected,” he said, adding that he hoped the south’s independence would lead the US to lift sanctions against his country.
Other dignitaries attending the celebrations included former US Secretary of State Colin Powell and the US permanent representative to the UN, Susan Rice.
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The Original Flag Store opened for business in 1965 in the small town of Thornton, Ontario -– just one hour’’s drive north of Toronto. We quickly became known as the company who could make a business, a cottage or an event burst with colour and pride.
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