Queer appreciation is more than just a one-month celebration in the gay mecca of Provincetown.
Queer acceptance is such a given in Provincetown, Massachusetts, that until recently it didn’t feel the need to celebrate LGBTQ+ Pride on a specific weekend in June. Pride is a daily, 24/7 part of life in P-town. But in 2018, the LGBTQ+ vacation hot-spot joined its counterparts around the world and launched its own commemoration of the Stonewall rebellion.
This year Provincetown celebrates Pride with its theme of “Big Queer Summer.” It kicks off June 3, coinciding with the town’s Womxn of Color Weekend, founded in 2007 as a four-day event designed to elevate, strengthen, educate, and celebrate LGBTQ+ women of color, trans, nonbinary, and genderfluid people of color, “and our accomplices,” as the site (wocw.org) puts it. Through workshops, parties, and more, WoCW hopes to change the culture in Provincetown, which has long had one of the highest populations of same-sex couples in the nation, but still suffers from a lack of diversity.
Official Provincetown Pride activities kick off this Friday, June 3, with the Provincetown Follies: Pride Edition at the Crown & Anchor (www.onlyatthecrown.com). For those who arrive a little early, though, there’s also a special Pride Edition Underwear Party taking place Thursday, June 2, at the Red Room (www.redroomatvelvet.com). Saturday’s festivities include a Pride Drag Brunch at the Pilgrim House (pilgrimhouseptown.com) and the Pride Queer Comedy Showcase at the Town Hall. Sunday features the Feet Over Front Street 5K Pride Run & Walk. You can also take an LGBTQ+ History Trolley Tour of Provincetown with noted Puritan religious activist Anne Hutchinson.
The following week, Provincetown will continue the Pride celebration with the Ptown Pride Retreat, June 6-13, a gay male retreat that fosters wellness through yoga, fitness, and healing activities in the natural beauty of the Cape. (ptownwellness.com)
There are always plenty of non-Pride activities and things to do in Provincetown, of course. Fortify yourself with a stop at the Provincetown Portuguese Bakery for Portuguese sweet rolls, or malassadas — sometimes known as Portuguese fried dough — that are coated with sugar and cinnamon (www.provincetownportuguesebakery.com). Portuguese fishermen were once recruited to the region, thus the cultural touchpoint.
On Commercial Street, you’ll also find restaurants, bars, theaters, drag shows, a women’s bookstore, queer boutiques, and the ubiquitous art galleries. The town’s proximity to Boston means that you’ll find world-class entertainment all summer long.
For more information on Provincetown Pride, visit the Provincetown Business Guild which has a full calendar of events as well as links and important information (ptown.org/calendars/pride/).