Cities across the States get a little more colorful as groups of people come together to celebrate Pride each year in June, with rainbow flags and clothes to symbolize gay pride. The American LGBTQ+ community and their allies hold parties and parades in June to honor the Stonewall Riots, a series of spontaneous protests that took place in June of 1969 in New York City over the police raid of a gay bar. This year commemorates 50 years since the riots, which served as a catalyst for the modern gay rights movement.
Many of those celebrating flock to New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Miami for magical pride parades that never fail to entertain, but many fantastic events are happening across the country that are worth attending. So grab your rainbow gear and have the time of your life at these Pride celebrations during the historical festivities this June.
Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Pride in Sioux Falls, South Dakota has grown from 4,000 attendees to over 10,000 in the past four years. On June 15th, 2019 the Sioux Falls Pride festival will celebrate the LGBTQ+ community from all over the midwest. The family-friendly festival showcases the abundance of LGBTQ+ talent in the region with local artists, musicians, and drag performers. Celebrate Pride Week with over 100 local businesses who’ll be hosting many public events. Travelers can stay at the Pride hotel partner, Clubhouse Hotel and Suites.
Providence, Rhode Island
Providence’s annual pride celebration will be held on Saturday, June 15th, during the 44th annual PrideFest. The Pride Illuminated Night Parade is one of the only after-hours pride parades in the country and the only one of its kind in New England. Providence typically sees over 60,000 people visiting the city during the Pride celebrations, so book your accommodation early.
Dallas Pride had been celebrated in September for the last 30 years, but this year the festival is moving to June to align with National Pride Month. Dallas is home to the nation’s sixth-largest LGBTQ+ population and celebrates diversity year-round. The Oak Lawn area has been the heart of the Dallas’ LBGTQ+ community and nightlife for more than three decades.
The two-day Dallas Pride celebration includes the Miller Light Music Festival on June 1st. The 36th annual Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade will be held on June 2nd and is named after the long-serving executive director of the Dallas Tavern Guild, Alan Ross. The parade theme is “Stonewall STRONG, Dallas PROUD” and will have a family Pride Zone, local vendors, food and beverage stands, as well as lots of live entertainment.
Sacramento Pride is held at the Capitol Mall and put on by the Sacramento LGBTQ+ Community Center. The 2019 festivities are dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots with the SacPride Festival and the Pride March. SacPride Festival on June 8th and 9th will have a variety of activities including a lip sync battle, live music, dancing, food, vendor booths, and more. The Pride March will be on June 9th — the colorful parade boasts floats and a grand marshal. Travelers can also visit the historic Lavender Heights, known as the Rainbow Chamber, which is the heart of Sacramento’s thriving LGBTQ+ scene with a variety of gay-friendly clubs, restaurants, shops, and galleries.
Orange County, CA
The annual Pride OC Festival has been held every June in Orange County for thirty years and offers a great alternative to the chaotic crowds that flock to West Hollywood for Pride. The OC has a weeklong celebration of LGBTQ+ culture and acceptance which renamed “Blaze it Forward” last year following the death of Blaze Bernstein in Orange County.
There will be live musical performances, engagements with community leaders, and a vibrant parade down 4th street throughout Pride Week. Travelers can stay at the Kimpton Shorebreak in Huntington Beach, which is the official hotel partner of the Pride festival and hang out at West Street Beach, the unofficial gay beach.
Sonoma County, CA
Sonoma County is known for world-class wine but also has a bustling LGBTQ+ scene. From May 31st to June 2nd, Santa Rosa will host one of California’s most jam-packed Pride festivals, Sonoma County Pride, complete with wine tastings from Out in the Vineyard, parades, film festivals, parties, speeches, and more.
Travelers can stay at The Astro Motel, the official headquarters of Sonoma Pride, or The Flamingo Hotel, which is a sponsor of the festivities. After the Pride festivities extend the trip a few days and head to nearby Guerneville in Sonoma Valley which has been a gay hot spot since the 1970s with campgrounds and bars surrounded by the incredible California Redwoods.
St. Pete, Florida
St. Pete Pride is one of Florida’s largest Pride events with over 250,000 people in attendance. The colorful St. Pete Pride Festival features a Pride parade, art installations, music, and other performances from June 21st to 23rd. The events promote unity, visibility, self-esteem, and positive image among the LGBTQ+ community throughout the state of Florida.