Pride Month 2011: One Last Weekend to Celebrate!
Take a break from all the politics (I’m looking at you, New York) and celebrate diversity during the last weekend of Pride Month! While events in Philadelphia, Portland, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C. have come and gone, there’s still time to join in on the party, with four of the best events still to come.
San Francisco (June 25-26): With celebrity Grand Marshalls like Chaz Bono and Olympia Dukakis, as well as performances by the likes of Kerli and Kat Graham, the nation’s largest LGBT gathering is a must-experience. The SF Pride Celebration takes place in the Civic Center (Saturday 12:00-6:00, Sunday 11:00-6:30) and the parade kicks off at 10:30 on Sunday (beginning at Market & Beale and ending at Market & 8th). Worried you won’t have a place to stay? Several hotels still have discounted rooms available, including Joie de Vivre, Clift, The Handlery Union Square, and Renoir. For more hotel information, visit San Francisco Pride’s website.
Chicago (June 24-26): Live performances at this year’s Pride Fest (located at Halsted & Waveland; Friday 4 - 10 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.) includes Mya, Crystal Waters, and Kim English, along with the requisite drag shows. On Sunday, the Pride Parade will take place at noon, stretching on Halsted from Belmont Avenue to Fullerton Parkway. Don’t miss: the Neo-Futurists’ performance “30 Queer Plays in 60 Straight Seconds”, from which half the proceeds go to the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance.
Twin Cities (June 25-26): The festival (Lorin Park; Saturday 10 a.m. – 10 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.) and parade (Hennepin Avenue; Sunday 11 a.m.) draw over a hundred thousand visitors, making it one of the largest gatherings in the Midwest. Both the Hyatt and the Hilton Garden Inn have rooms still available at a discounted rate, which you can find by checking out the Twin Cities Pride website.
New York City (June 26): New York’s PrideFest (Hudson Street between Abingdon and West 14th; 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.) and parade (36th Street & 5th Avenue to Christopher & Greenwich Streets; 12 p.m.) are the go-to events on the East Coast. With parade Grand Marshalls like Dan Savage and Terry Miller—founders of the “It Gets Better Project”— and Reverend Pat Bumgardner of the Metropolitan Community Church of New York, as well as numerous events throughout the city ranging from the kid-friendly Center Families Family Pride Picnic to the VIP rooftop party at the Hudson Terrace (621 West 46th St; 2 – 8 p.m.), there’s a little something for everyone.
Kirsten Stamn is an editorial intern at Travel + Leisure.