As usual around pride time, Heritage of Pride takes the reins with a line-up of events, starting with the Pride Rally on June 20. The Rally will feature well-known performers and motivating speakers from the LGBT community, including Marga Gomez and Gender Offenders, to kick-off this year’s Pride Week events. The first NYC LGBT Pride Rally occurred one month after the Stonewall Riots in June 1969 when 500 people gathered for a "Gay Power" demonstration in Washington Square Park. Since 1997, the Rally has been held in the beautiful and well-maintained outdoor venue of Bryant Park.
Then, June 28, head over to Hudson St. between Abingdon Sq. and West 14th St for PrideFest, the annual LGBT street fair. PrideFest seeks to bring together local residents and families, community leaders, and area business owners to celebrate in the street.
Also on the 28th, the annual Pride March begins at 5th Ave and 52nd St at noon and ends at Christopher and Greenwich Sts. This, year, the March Committee is pleased to announce Cleve Jones, Anne Kronenberg and Dustin Lance Black as Grand Marshals.
And to keep the pride alive, join HOP for the official NYC Pride Week Women’s Dance, Rapture on the River, now in its sixth year. Located on Pier 54, this has become a staple pride event for women in New York City, and all proceeds benefit New York City’s LGBT Pride Week events and community organizations. Also at Pier 54 is Dance on the Pier, the official NYC LGBT Dance on the Pier, borne out of a time when LGBT persons could not dance openly and proudly together.
June 27 at Bryant Park, it’ll be the time to hit the streets! Make some noise. Be visible. Be heard. Bring signs, banners, drums, giant puppets, flags, hula hoops, or just be there! The Dyke March is a protest march, not a parade—we don’t ask for a permit, because we have the right to protest. Thousands of lesbians take over the streets every year in celebration of lesbians and to protest against ongoing discrimination, harassment and anti-lesbian violence in schools, on the job, in our families and on the streets.
The Center’s Garden Party (June 22 at Pier 54) started in 1984 with 1,000 donors and friends and one catering company. Nowadays, Garden Party attracts over 2,300 friends and supporters and features 40 food participants. Celebrity chefs this year include Rebecca Charles (Pearl Oyster Bar), David Pasternak (Esca), and Daniel Angerer (Klee Brasserie). And back as event chair this year is Gourmet Editor-in-Chief Ruth Reichl. As the only LGBT tasting festival in the country, Garden Party is definitely a tasty treat you will not want to miss this year.
And before the Manhattan festivities, you can get the pride party started with Brooklyn Pride on June 13, Bronx Pride on June 20, Newark/Essex Pride on June 14 and Philadelphia Pride on June 14.