June is Pride month, so we’re coming at you with a quick-n-dirty guide to some of the biggest (and rowdiest!) LGBTQ+ celebrations going on around the United States. Though Pride is first and foremost a time for those of us within the community to honor the past and rally for the future, it’s also a time for letting our hair down and having a good ol’ fashioned kiki (party, that is).
And of course Pride celebrations aren’t exclusive to LGBTQ+ folks — allies are strongly encouraged to join in on the fun and help us lift up the call for visibility and equality.
Think you might wanna get in on the action? Then keep reading below for our ultimate guide to Pride.
Pride Guide 2019
New York City
Unsurprisingly, NYC has one of the most popular (and well-attended) Pride celebrations in the country. Hundreds of thousands of folks descend on the city each June to take part in the month-long festivities, which span all five boroughs and culminate in a humongous blowout through the streets of Manhattan.
This particular Pride is a special one for New York, not only because it’s the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising (the event many credit for starting the modern-day LGBTQ+ rights movement), but because it’s the first time the city — or any U.S. city, for that matter — is hosting World Pride. If you can attend Pride anywhere this year, this is the place to do it.
- When: June 1-30, with the main Manhattan Pride Parade launching June 30 at noon.
- Where: Everywhere! Each weekend, a different borough has a Pride parade, so you can literally spit and hit a partay.
If you wanna be surrounded by revelry, but are a little intimidated by the size of New York, consider hitting up LA Pride. Operating for over 40 years, the parade is another beloved bastion of the community and takes place in the iconic West Hollywood gayborhood every June.
In a tender nod to the 50th anniversary of Stonewall, the year’s theme is “Love is Love,” which the city will embody with a bevy of enticing parties, concerts, outdoor festivities, and drag brunches. LA Pride is technically running for the entire first week of June, but the big party is happening all weekend long.
- When: June 1-9, with the main Pride Parade starting on June 9.
- Where: Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood — you can’t miss it!
If you’re a Southern fella looking to get your Pride on, we suggest checking out the festivities in New Orleans this June. In true Cajun style, the party’s a swinging one, with thousands of folks gathering in the historic French Quarter to throw beads, sip hurricanes, and honor the LGBTQ+ community.
Where other cities sprinkle their Pride events throughout an entire week, Nola packs it all into a single raucous weekend, ensuring all those in attendance don’t get much sleep as they dance under a sky of rainbow flags. Expect burlesque shows, boisterous drag queens, and plenty of amazing live music.
- When: June 7-9, with the official parade happening at 7:30 pm on June 8.
- Where: The French Quarter.
For those revelers looking for something a little more community-based, Gay Pride Seattle may just be the ticket. Stretching from June 14-30, the events might be smaller in scale than some of the others on this list, but they’re no less meaningful. Join for the march down 4th Avenue or simply indulge in various LGBTQ+ events at venues throughout the city.
However, if a jam-packed party is totally your speed, we recommend checking out the Seattle PrideFest after-concert, which features five different stages and over 100 performers.
- When: June 14-30, with the PrideFest parade on June 30 at 11 am.
- Where: The intersection of 4th Avenue and Union Street.
Centered on Boystown (America’s first officially recognized “gay village”), Chicago Pride Fest is a two-day long celebration of all things LGBTQ+. While there’s definitely plenty of dancing, drinking, and partying (it’s a street festival, after all), the good times are intimately connected to the city’s rich queer history.
And did we mention the festival features live music by popular artists, food and drink booths, 100+ separate arts/craft vendors, DJs, drag shows, and even a pet parade? Yeah, we clearly need to get to the Windy City ASAP.
- When: June 22-30, with the main parade going up June 30 at noon.
- Where: The corner of Broadway and Montrose in Boystown.
Every third weekend in June, the Mile High City pulls out all the stops for a true Pride extravaganza. The festivities kick off with the annual Saturday morning 5K, which brings folks from all different walks (or, runs) of life together for a fabulous show of athleticism and pride spirit.
Though there are no “official” post-race activities (unless you count grabbing cocktails at Wrangler or X Bar), participants can take part in any number of concerts, drag shows, and pop-up performances through the night. The party keeps rolling with the official Denver Gay Pride parade downtown on Sunday.
- When: June 15-16, with the race on Saturday morning and the parade at 9:30 am on Sunday.
- Where: Cheesman Park.
Sure, Texas doesn’t have the best reputation with LGBTQ+ folks, but its major cities always do it up for Pride, including this one. Running from June 22-30, H-Town transforms into a rollicking queer paradise as hundreds of thousands gather downtown to party and march.
This year’s theme is “Summer of ‘69,” chosen to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. In that spirit, the festivities will be as much about the community’s past as it is about its future. While the march itself wraps up around 9 p.m. after parties will be ranging downtown until the wee hours of the morning.
- When: June 22-23, with the main parade happening on June 23 at 8pm.
- Where: The cross-section of McKinney and Smith Streets.
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