The subtropical island of Key West is to welcome revelers to its annual Pride celebrations Wednesday through Sunday, June 1-5. Scheduled festivities showcase the diversity and equality that help make the continental United States’ southernmost city a top vacation destination for LGBTQ visitors worldwide.
Among the several dozen planned activities are pool parties and late-night soirees, an inaugural “Just for the Girls” women’s event, a disco dance party, nightly drag shows, theater presentations, a Pride street fair and a high-energy parade.
Those arriving early for the festival can attend the Pride Follies Saturday, May 28, at the Key West Theater, 512 Eaton St. Doors open at 7 p.m., followed by an 8 p.m. curtain for the show billed as a “fun evening of the best and worst of local Key West entertainment.”
Daily activity options include museum, nature and culinary tours, as well as aquatic excursions such as snorkeling and sunset sails and eco-tours.
Key West Pride and Island House Resort are to host an all-welcome kick-off gala at the 1129 Fleming St. property from 5-8 p.m. Wednesday, June 1. Planned attractions include complimentary Stoli cocktails, champagne and hors d’oeuvres.
Subsequent festivities include Thursday’s Drag Pool Party and Brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Winslow’s Bungalows, a Kimpton Key West property at 725 Truman Ave., and Friday’s “Just for the Girls” cocktail welcoming party slated for 3 p.m. at Marrero’s Guest Mansion, 410 Fleming St.
Planned stage productions include Fringe Theater’s “A Fabulous Evening with Lillian Baxter,” created and performed by John Vessels and Jay Schwandt. Show tunes, lavish costumes and outrageous tales characterize the production scheduled at 7 p.m. June 1-4 at the Little Room Jazz Club, 821 Duval St.
In addition, the Waterfront Playhouse at Mallory Square is to present the June 3-4 “return” of Joan Rivers, portrayed by impersonator Joe Posa.
Among Saturday’s many attractions is the Pride Street Fair, set for 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., along the 600 to 900 blocks of Key West’s famed Duval Street.
Sunday’s final-day events are to include the all-welcome Pride Parade showcasing a 100-foot section of Key West’s famed 1.25-mile-long sea-to-sea rainbow flag, created in 2003 by the late Gilbert Baker.
Slated for 5 p.m. Sunday, the parade is to proceed up Duval Street from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean. Afterward, participants and spectators can gather for Key West’s famed Tea Dance at the renowned La Te Da at 1125 Duval St.
Event information and complete schedule: gaykeywestfl.com/pride/.