Happy Pride Month, tri-state gays! For the first time ever, Montclair, NJ will have a week-long Pride celebration of its own put on by Out Montclair. Out Montclair is a non-profit volunteer-run organization founded last year in 2021 to support the LGBTQIA+ community of Montclair.
The festivities begin June 2nd with the Official Opening Party For Montclair Pride: Pride Night At The Museum. Come celebrate queer artists, musicians, DJs, and dancers at the Montclair Art Museum (MAM). Free First Thursdays are put on every month, but this one is extra special. Enjoy a Docent-led tour and an optional VIP fundraiser reception with artist Kyle Meyer. The blowout party afterward is free for everyone to attend. Proceeds from the reception will benefit OUT Montclair and the Museum.
On June 3rd, enjoy a Movie Night Under the Stars: Rocky Horror Picture Show with Montclair Film at Lackawanna Plaza. Come for the pre-show and performance by The Ordinary Kids. Refreshments will be available courtesy of The Montclair Brewery, Montclair General Store, Little Daisy Bake Shop, Guerriero Gelato, Silantro Tacos, The Hotdog Lady, and Rolling Yatai. Prop bags will be sold with all the essentials.
From June 3rd-5th, enjoy the Pride Workout Weekend at participating gyms in Montclair. Events include Pride Fitness Happy Hour, Out Montclair Pride Ride, Pride HIIT Workout, Pride Row Express Signature, and more. Check out the workout schedule below and make sure to register to reserve your spot.
Check out the Drag Variety Show at Vanguard Theater June 6th. This one is for the adults! Act One will be PG-13, and Act Two will be spicy! Come be wowed by local drag royalty.
On June 7th, Join the Unitarian Universalist Congregation for Reading Scripture with Pride. LGBTQ people of faith will share their experiences, and clergy will each reflect on why Sacred Scriptures should not be weaponized against LGBTQ people. Hang around for the reception to follow. This event is co-sponsored by the Montclair Interfaith Clergy Association. If you are unable to attend in person, you can watch the livestream.
Drag Queens and Doughnuts are the perfect combo and on June 8th you can experience them in all their glory at at Montclair Bread Company. This event is just as sweet as it sounds. Participate in the donut decorating competition inspired by local drag royalty! Get your tickets here.
Keep the fun going on June 9th at Pride Stride with Fleet Feet at Montclair Brewery. This 4th annual 5K run/walk is included in this year’s Pride festivities and starts and ends at Montclair Brewery. Register here for the run, and afterwards, the first round at Montclair Brewery is on the house!
The official Pride Festival put on by Out Montclair will be on Saturday June 11, 2022. The festival will be located on Bloomfield Avenue between Church and Park in downtown Montclair.
The festival will be em-ceed by New Jersey native, actress, Emmy award-winning comedian and proud member of the LGBTQIA+ community, Judy Gold. “Where else but Montclair would a 6-foot-3 Jewish lesbian from Clark be the star of this historic occasion? There’s nowhere in the world I’d rather be than with my New Jersey family in this gay Mayberry, celebrating Pride with everyone in the beautiful LGBTQIA+ community. Montclair, you’re gorgeous and you know it and I love you anyway,” Gold said in a press release.
To kick-off the event, there will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony by local officials, including Acting Attorney General Matt Platkin, Rep. Mikie Sherrill, Rep. Donald Payne Jr., State Senator Nia Gill, Montclair Council Member Peter Yacobellis (also Out Montclair’s President) and the Mayor of Montclair Sean Spiller, and a special performance from The School of Rock Montclair.
The festival will be packed with entertainment and performances courtesy of the recent Broadway cast of “Jagged Little Pill,” Dyllón Burnside who plays Ricky in FX’s “Pose,” and Black trans activist and Ru Girl Miss Peppermint, and the Vanguard Theater Company’s cast of “Rent.” But wait, there’s more! Don’t miss Montclair local and Broadway star, Laura Benanti, an appearance by trans activist, supermodel, and New Jersey native Carmen Carrera, Maplewood, NJ, native Randi Driscoll performing “What Matters,” the official tribute song to the late Matthew Shepard, out pro baseball player and country singer Bryan Ruby, the artist J-Line and several more!
Not only is there a festival, there’s also the first-ever The Montclair Price Concert at the Wellmount Theater in downtown Montclair after the festival on Saturday night June 11. Fab the Duo and Jordy will be supporting artists. Who is headlining, you ask? None other than Betty Who! She will be performing Pride anthems including “Somebody Loves You,” and from her just-announced new album, “Blow Out My Candle.” This is a Pride concert you won’t want to miss, so make sure to get your tickets here starting at $29.50.
This year’s festival theme is “Be You. Be Heard.” To honor this sentiment, local LGBTQIA+ community of artists were invited to perform on the School of Rock Stage. The School of Rock stage, sponsored by Summit Health, Montclair Local, the Bravitas Group, Mental Health Association, Park Street Auto, and of course, The School of Rock Montclair, will be situated on Park St. near the YMCA.
“I’m beyond excited about each of these individuals and the many others who we’ll announce in the future. Each of them, with many from right here in the Garden State, have incredible stories and have contributed so meaningfully to the broader movement for justice and equality in this country.”, said Out Montclair President Peter Yacobellis in a press release. “Through remarks and performance, I’m excited to have all of this talent reinforcing our theme of ‘Be You. Be Heard.’ and joining LGBTQIA+ people and our allies from all around the region,” he added.
If you are interested in attending the event, make sure to join the Facebook event located here.
Tickets are selling out fast for all events, so get them now. See you there!