Image courtesy of Long Beach Pride. Photos from last year's Pride Parade by Asia Morris.
While the 33rd Annual Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride Parade and Festival are of course the main events to look toward, surrounding the Solidarity Through Pride-themed occasion are more than a few ways to celebrate and show off your pride in Long Beach. From creative healing workshops and a free movie screening to the annual iconic Pink Party and a mass LGBT wedding ceremony, there’s something for everyone to attend starting this Friday.
The festival will take place from 11:00AM to 10:00PM on Saturday and Sunday, with annual the parade to kick off at 10:00AM on Sunday starting at Ocean Boulevard and Lindero Avenue, marching toward downtown to Alamitos Avenue. American rapper Deja Trimble, better known as DeJ Loaf, will take Saturday’s stage by storm. Known for their high-energy shows, Utah-based rock band Neon Trees will perform on Sunday’s main stage.
Friday, May 20
Events leading up to Pride include Long Beach’s revered Pink Party, to take place at the new WE Labs at The Packard. The pride kick-off event and fundraiser begins at 7:00PM, with Queer Mafia and the LGBTQ Center of Long Beach to bring featured artists Jesse Montana and DJ James Kennedy to the stage. Take advantage of cocktails, food trucks, a body painting booth and even an eyelash extension station ready and waiting to get you ready and hyped for a sure to be spectacular Long Beach Pride. Click here to purchase tickets.
On a separate but related note, the 4th Annual Dyke March and Rally, followed by The After Party is set to celebrate women’s rights, increase lesbian visibility and “support the rights of all women regardless of labels,” according to the march’s bio, with one helluva lineup of electric events. The rally begins at 6:30PM at Bixby Park with Bearcoon at the helm, followed by the march slated to start at 7:30PM. The After Party will start at 8:00PM with Doll Parts ready to rock Paradise Bar & Restaurant. For more information, visit the event page here.
Also on Friday, bring a box of breakfast cereal or other non-perishable food item to Cocktails for a Cause at Padre to benefit the AIDS Food Store. Gay Entertainment Directory invites you to kick back on Padre’s rooftop patio, enjoy good company, sip a few cocktails and kick off Pride by giving back. The all-inclusive social event will run from 7:00PM to 10:00PM. Visit the AIDS Food Store page here for more details.
Saturday, May 21
Courtesy of Pride Real Estate Professionals Association (PREPA) a free screening of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial will take place at the Art Theatre at 10:00AM. Everyone is welcome to attend to relive the moment when a friendly alien touched movie-goers’ hearts, or introduce the 1982 science fiction classic to a young one for the first time. For more information, visit the event page here.
Attend a local healing and creative workshop at 3:30PM at the Hellada Art Center and Fine Art Gallery. During Healing Through Creativity: A Creative Warrior’s Journey, participants will complete writing and arts prompts designed to help them let go of their “‘sick, challenged or impaired’ identities,” according to the announcement. As attendees share their insights with the group, moderator Richard Harvey will compile a running Vocabulary of Hope and Empowerment. For more details about the vent, partially sponsored by an Arts Council for Long Beach grant, please visit the event page here.
Our local Moonlight Mash, an extension of the monthly bike ride in Eugene, Oregon, where cyclists ride under the light of the full moon, will host their monthly jaunt into the night with the Pride Ride, to start from 1st Street and the Promenade in downtown at 8:00PM. With free bike rentals courtesy of Pedal Movement and quick fixes offered to any bike in need of a little love, Long Beachers have no excuse but to throw on their Pride gear and get to rollin'!
Sunday, May 22
A mass LGBT wedding ceremony, perfectly entitled LOVE WINS, and in celebration of the 2015 Supreme Court ruling in favor of gay marriage, will be held at 9:30AM on Ocean Boulevard, smack dab in between Cherry and Junipero Avenues, thanks to the City of Long Beach’s City Clerk’s Office. Couples interested in participating, don’t wait any longer to follow the required steps outlined here. For those interested in witnessing this momentous occasion, you know just where to go to kick off the 33rd Annual Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride Parade.
Runners have until Friday, May 20 at midnight to register for the Long Beach Pride Rainbow Run, organized by the Shoreline Front Runners of Long Beach. The 5K and 10K runs both start at 8:00AM, but for those of you less athletically inclined, come see the winners cross the finish line on the bluff at Junipero and Ocean at 9:30AM For more information or to register, visit the event page here.
For more information about Long Beach Pride, visit the website here.
This report was updated on Tuesday, May 17, at 9:30AM with information about the Moonlight Mash Pride Ride.