Where to celebrate Pride in Central Florida

LGBTQ community marks Pride month in June

(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda) (Vadim Ghirda, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Orlando, Fla. – Central Florida celebrates Pride like no other place in the world.

June and October are the most important months for celebrating the LGBTQ community.

Orlando’s biggest annual Pride event is the Come Out With Pride festival and parade in mid-October. It’s scheduled to coincide with National Coming Out Day.

Pride Month is traditionally held in June in honor of the 1969 Stonewall Riots that led to the Gay Rights Movement.

The biggest Pride Month event in Central Florida is called Gay Days.

GAYDAYS

The GayDays celebration runs from June 2 to June 5 at the Avanti Palms Resort Orlando. It’s on International Drive in the heart of Orlando’s tourist district and close to Universal Studios. The celebration started in 1991 when members of the LGBTQ community wore red shirts to Central Florida theme parks to show their numbers as an out and proud economic powerhouse. According to the Guide to the Official GayDays, 50,000 packed the Magic Kingdom on that Saturday in June 1991. It says, “The 3 o’clock parade down Main Street always draws an unforgettable ‘sea of red’ that can be seen from one end of the park to the other.”

The modern-day GayDays includes days and nights of giant pool parties at Avanti Palms Resort Orlando. Tickets can be purchased for each party. The resort also hosts pageants for Miss GayDays and Mr. GayDays Leather. The resort also hosts GayDays Expo. It’s a free event where LGBTQ vendors sell their creations.

ONE MAGICAL WEEKEND

One Magical Weekend is one of the largest LGBTQ+ music festivals in the world and runs June 2 through June 6. The Fairfield by Marriott, Crowne Plaza and Sheraton Lake Buena Vista are the host hotels. Featured performers include DJ Paulo, DJ Abel, DJ Nina Flowers, DJ Alex Ramos, Edgar and Oscar Velazquez, Twisted Dee, DJ Cindel, DJ Deanne, DJ Joe Ross, DJ Obra Primitiva, DJ Bio Zounds, DJ Sinna-G, DJ Edil Hernandez, AND DJ Scott Robert. Ticket prices vary.

PRIDEFEST KISSIMMEE

PrideFest Kissimmee happens at the Kissimmee Civil Center at 201 E. Dakin Avenue from noon to 5 p.m. on June 4. Vendors and food trucks will be there as part of the celebration. Admission is free.

SUNSET PRIDE MARKET

Sunset PRIDE Market happens at 1008 State Road 434 in Longwood from 5-9 p.m. on June 4. The celebration features a local artisan market.


About the Author:

Phil Landeros joined WKMG-TV as an executive producer in March 2021.