Droves of Aucklanders donning rainbow outfits were gutted when a steady downpour caused the cancellation of the Ending HIV Big Gay Out yesterday.

The annual event was due to take place at Coyle Park in Point Chevalier from midday, but was rained off.

Organisers say it has been cancelled because of heavy rain, which would have created a health and safety risk because of electricity connections.

A statement on the Ending HIV website said those involved in the event were "heartbroken" about the cancellation, which was the first in the event's history.


Event attendee Viviana Patron told the Herald she had spent three hours getting ready, having kicked off her process of getting ready at 8.30am.

Patron had headed along with two friends to represent AUT and had hoped to connect with people.

"I wanted to celebrate gay pride and whatnot … show off my drag and represent my school," she said.

"I showed up, I got ready for three hours - hair and makeup."

The show still went on for some hopeful attendees, who headed to K Rd's Family Bar to see several drag queens scheduled to perform at the event.

Another K Rd spot, Caluzzi, hosted Mr Gay NZ late on Sunday afternoon.

But for others, like first-time attendee Rebecca Hegh, the disappointment was real.

"Being outside, meeting new people ... it was my first time and I really wanted it to be a good day," Hegh said.


Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Mayor Phil Goff had planned on attending the event.

Other Labour MPs, as well as a number of National Party and Green MPs, were slated to make an appearance.

Ardern posted on Facebook about the cancellation.

"Huge thanks to all the organisers who put so much effort in, and to our team of volunteers too," she said.

"See you at the Pride Parade!! #RelentlesslyProud."