Originally published in the June 2009 issue of The Advocate.
This year?s 40th anniversary of the Stonewall rebellion adds more significance to an already action-packed New York City Pride Week, when even the iconic Empire State Building swings into the spirit by turning its nighttime lights to lavender. Saturday?s annual rally in Bryant Park (June 20, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.) kicks off the main revelry, this year showcasing alumni from the fabled uprising. Bryant Park also serves as stepping-off point for the Dyke March, commencing its popular politicized procession to Washington Square Park at 5 p.m. sharp (June 27).
Always one of the week?s tonier events, the Center?s Garden Party (June 22, 6 p.m.; Pier 54, 13th Street at West Side Highway) is a culinary fest featuring cuisine from many of the city?s top restaurants. The Stonewall Inn plays host to Fusion (June 24, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.; AVP.org/events.htm), a midweek fund-raiser for the Anti-Violence Project. Back at Pier 54, Rapture on the River (June 27, 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.) is the annual women?s dance, while the man-heavy Dance on the Pier (June 28, 4 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.) will this year feature DJ Corey Craig as well as a superstar performer to be announced (past years have seen the likes of Whitney, Janet, and New York City natives Cyndi Lauper and Jennifer Lopez).
The week?s main event is Sunday?s Pride Parade (June 28, beginning at noon; Fifth Avenue and 52nd Street to Christopher and Greenwich streets), this year co?grand-marshaled by AIDS Memorial Quilt creator Cleve Jones and Anne Kronenberg, Harvey Milk?s political campaign manger. Meanwhile, Pridefest (June 28, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.), the LGBT community street fair, takes place on Hudson Street between Abingdon Square and West 14th Street.
Unless otherwise noted, more info on these events is available at NYCPride.org.
NYC & Company, the City?s tourism office, has launched a yearlong ?Rainbow Pilgrimage? campaign to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion. Visitors can learn more at www.nycgo.com/gay.