New York City
Who doesn’t love the Big Apple during New York City Pride? The Heritage of Pride Festival begins June 16 with the majority of the official (and unofficial) events June 22-24. There is a Fifth Avenue march, multiple dance events and a vendor area. Grammy Award-winning artist Cyndi Lauper and other celebrities will strut their stuff. There is too much to do to list here: Check out www.nycpride.org for the what, when, where and how you can do it.
And don’t forget it’s the one-year anniversary of New York state passing legislation for same-sex couples to marry. To show off their pride, the Gansevoort Hotel Group is offering “Mr. & Mr.”/“Mrs. & Mrs.” Packages. Starting at $645 for a superior room and $935 for a suite, the package includes a fabulous room, two one-hour massages, car service to City Hall and booze! Visit www.gansevoortpark.com and www.hotelgansevoort.com for more information.
Think you can’t be in two prides at once? Now you can, thanks to a new partnership between Clear Channel and San Francisco Pride. On June 24, tune in online at www.SFPrideLive.com and be part of the third-largest Pride parade in the United States. The broadcast is live and uncensored. It begins at 10 a.m. PST. Better settle in with your computer, iPad or whatever device you will use to log in. There are more than 200 parade contingents, 300 exhibitors and more than 20 stages and venues.
And if being there in person is on your bucket list, good news! The fabulous Virgin America airline, which has begun new nonstop service between Philadelphia and San Francisco, had recent airfares at less than $1,000 round trip. Visit www.virginamerica.com but note airfares change frequently.
Could Montréal be the gayest city in all of Canada? Montréal is so fabulous to the LGBT traveler, there are now three ways to show your pride in the close-by, gay-friendly international destination.
Montréal’s Divers/Cité, best known as Montréal’s LGBT festival for the past 20 years, is evolving into a festival of creativity, music and art. It takes place July 30-Aug. 5. Check out www.diverscite.org for a complete listing of events.
The new Montréal Pride Week, Aug. 11-19, bills itself as a celebration of the diversity, individuality and pride within the LGBT community. Visit www.fiertemontrealpride.com/en/ for more information.
Maybe you are the Queer of the Year? The third annual Queer of the Year competition, hosted by Tourisme Montréal, kicked off in June and runs through the end of August. Five finalists will be flown to LGBT-loving Montréal for an all-expenses-paid week of challenges, adventure and high-performance fun. Organizers say this year’s competition and festivities are going to be harder, bolder, faster, funnier and more absurd. Visit www.facebook.com/QOTYcontest through July 20 for more information.
Among my very favorite pride events is the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade, marking 29 years this Sept. 16. Check out www.dallasprideparade.com for more info.
This weekend Baltimore shows its Pride, June 15-17, with a block party, parade and festival. Visit www.baltimorepride.org for more information.
For something a little closer to home, RisQue Atlantic City Pride kicks off July 5-9. Check out www.atlanticcitypride.org. I’ll see you there!
Jeff Guaracino is the vice-chair of the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association and author of “Gay and Lesbian Tourism: The Essential Guide for Marketing.”