Robust security will be in place for today's 17th Big Gay Out festival in Auckland.

Record crowds are expected with up to 12,000 people forecast to descend on Coyle Park at Point Chevalier.

Politicians including Prime Minister John Key, going for the 10th time, are expected to attend and heightened security is likely following a recent incident at Waitangi in which National MP Steven Joyce was hit in the head by a flying sex toy.

Today's Big Gay Out includes headliners Anika Moa and Samantha Jade.

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A bus to the event will depart from outside Family Bar on Karangahape Rd every 15 minutes.