Happy Pride! Get your festivities on!
Chicago is famous for its vibrant LGBTQ+ community and festivities during Pride Month. This year, there’s no shortage of exciting events and activities for everyone to partake in and celebrate diversity, love, and freedom. Below is a collection of 25 fun-filled activities to make the most out of this year’s Pride Month.
Parades, Festivals and Street Parties
1. Chicago Pride Parade
The crowning event of Pride Month in the city, this parade features vibrant floats, costumed performers, and a contagious spirit of unity. Expect a sea of rainbow colors, fantastic performances, and lots of cheer.
2. Chicago Pride Fest
On the weekend before the iconic Chicago Pride Parade, Chicago will be celebrating the Pride Fest from June 17-18. This lively two-day festival takes place in the heart of the Northalsted neighborhood. There's a little something for everyone: live music from three separate stages, a special Youth Pride Space for teenagers, and an exhibition of the finest drag performances in Chicago.
3. Pride in the Park
A two-day festival at Grant Park, Pride in the Park brings together live performances, food stalls, craft vendors, and a vibrant LGBTQ+ community. It's a high-energy celebration of love, diversity, and music.
4. Back Lot Bash
An outdoor women's festival that unfolds pride weekend in Andersonville, featuring live music, comedians, family-friendly activities, and so much more.
5. Pride North
Located in Rogers Park, this street festival is known for its fantastic line-up of DJs, drag performances, and live music. Plus, it's free!
Nightlife and Drag Shows
6. Drag Conquers Hate - HRC Chicago Pride Kick-Off
The Human Rights Campaign's Chicago chapter is launching Pride Season with a dazzling drag extravaganza, hosted by Tasha Salad. Prepare for a night filled with mesmerizing performances by drag kings and queens. Alongside the fun, there's an auction boasting impressive items and plentiful giveaways. Committee members will share ways to support their mission for equality. The cherry on top? It's a free event! But, with limited space, make sure to secure your tickets promptly and extend invites to your pals!
7. Queer Prom: A Starry Night
Don your prom best and join the LGBTQ+ kickball team, Some Tops Required, for their first-ever Queer Prom. Expect an evening of music, dance, live performances, drag, and a silent auction, all geared towards adults 21 and over. It's more than just fun, with all proceeds benefitting the Center on Halsted’s Youth & Family Services.
8. Sundaze at the Promontory
Don't just celebrate Pride, elevate it at this thrilling rooftop patio party! Enjoy panoramic views of the city while you move to the pulse-pounding beats provided by the renowned DJ Jukie Tha Kidd. As if the stunning views and invigorating music weren't enough, the party will also tantalize your taste buds with a tantalizing array of tacos.
The event offers two admission options, perfect for all budgets. For just $5, you can secure your online ticket and access to this vibrant event. Alternatively, for those looking to add a touch of luxury to their Pride celebration, bottle service is available for $100-$125. Whichever option you choose, this rooftop patio party promises to be a high-point (quite literally!) of your Pride month celebrations.
9. Tea Dance
Join the Chicago Foundation for Women as they host the delightfully nostalgic, yet entirely contemporary, Pride Tea Dance party. This free event offers an evening of music, dance, and community-building, with tunes provided by none other than DJ Rexi.
Originating in the 1950s, Tea Dances were afternoon social events designed as a safe space for LGBTQ+ individuals to connect. These get-togethers offered a chance to mingle, make friends, and enjoy good company over a spot of tea. This Pride, the Chicago Foundation for Women revives this historical event, infusing it with modern energy and inclusivity.
Workshops and Community Events
10. Get Lit: Pride Night
Join the American Writers Museum for a unique Pride Month celebration, honoring LGBTQ+ authors. Participate in a themed scavenger hunt for a chance to win prizes, experience a vibrant drag storytime, and join the internal Pride Parade through the museum. The event isn't complete without their signature 'This Drink Is Gay' cocktail, inspired by Juno Dawson's book. This celebration brings together literary appreciation and Pride festivities for a memorable occasion!
11. A Night Full of Stars: A WCPA Pride Concert
The Windy City Performing Arts ensemble brings you "A Night Full of Stars," their exclusive Pride concert edition. Showcasing solo and ensemble performances, the concert puts the spotlight on their talented members. The repertoire is a treat, featuring numbers such as "This is Me" from The Greatest Showman, an inventive take on Smashmouth's "All Star," "How Far I'll Go" from Disney's Moana, and "City of Stars" from La La Land. Experience a night of musical stardom!
12. LGBTQ+ Comics Creators Panel Discussion
Dive into the world of comic books and their outstanding LGBTQ+ representation with local creators Kat Leyh, Pamela Nuñez-Trejo, and Whitney Wasson. Moderated by Devin Whitlock, this panel discussion explores their creative journeys and uncovers the history of LGBTQ+ representation in comics. An enlightening event for fans and budding creators alike!
13. Queer Pride Fam Jam at The Salt Shed
This inclusive Pride event — backed by Block Club — is sure to be a hit with families. Expect a toe-tapping Slo ‘Mo party filled with R&B, house, and disco tunes, alongside spectacular drag transformations and performances. Pick up a few moves at the house music dance workshops, join in the harmonious sing-along, or show off your skateboarding skills. An assortment of food and homemade goods will be available at the market, and adults can enjoy a selection of beverages for purchase. Best of all, entrance to this celebration won't cost a dime!
14. Navy Pier Pride
Celebrate diversity and inclusivity at the annual Navy Pier Pride, a free full-day extravaganza dedicated to the LGBTQIA+ community. This vibrant event encompasses live music, performances by local LGBTQIA+ artists, educational initiatives, and resources from community partners, making it a holistic celebration of pride.
15. Story Hour with Drag Queens
Many local libraries and bookstores host story hours featuring beloved drag queens. It's a fun, inclusive way to engage children in literature.
Outdoor and Fitness Events
16. Cubs' Annual Pride Celebration at Wrigley Field
The Cubs' Pride Celebration at Wrigley Field is a must-attend event in support of the LGBTQ+ community. Expect a thrilling pregame show by the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus and a special first pitch from TikTok stars Adam Motz and Tee Lam of "2 Dads 2 Twins". It also features a Pride Market, courtesy of a partnership with the LGBT Chamber of Commerce of Illinois, showcasing LGBTQ+ owned businesses. There are fun-filled activities like face painting, in-game music by DJ Ca$h Era, and exclusive Pride-themed merchandise with a portion of the proceeds supporting LGBTQ+ community partners. Also, in a poignant pregame ceremony, Glenn Burke, the first openly gay MLB player, will be honored. Tickets include a Pride-themed Cubs jersey, with part of the proceeds supporting LGBTQ+ community partners.
17. Dive Into Pride Pool Party
Step back in time and into a world of elegance at the InterContinental Hotel’s iconic 1920s Spanish Majolica-decorated pool. This isn't your everyday pool party; it's a luxurious affair where the sparkling waters meet handcrafted cocktails, all set to a mesmerizing, rhythmic backdrop thanks to DJ Martin's spinning.
And what's a Pride party without a dash of fabulous? Get ready for unforgettable performances by the incredible Naysha Lopez, renowned for her star turn on "RuPaul’s Drag Race: All-Stars", and the locally adored drag queen, Serena Fiierce. Their performances are sure to bring that extra sparkle to an already dazzling evening.
Remember, this is a 21-and-older event, so leave the kids at home and come ready to swim, sip, and sashay the night away. It's a Pride experience you won't want to miss!
18. Pride Skate Party
Lace up your skates, as it's time to roll into Pride with style and grace! Back for another thrilling round due to high demand, the Pride Skate Party offers an exhilarating way to celebrate diversity and inclusivity. This event shines a spotlight on Black LGBTQ+ individuals, but its welcoming environment is open to all, truly embodying the spirit of Pride.
Educational and Advocacy Events
19. Pride Month Speaker Series
Attend a talk from a range of speakers who share their experiences and insights about being part of the LGBTQ+ community.
20. LGBTQ+ Rights Advocacy Workshop
Many organizations host workshops and sessions on understanding and advocating for LGBTQ+ rights, a meaningful way to contribute to the cause.
21. Pride History Tour
Chicago's Pride history is rich and storied. Take a guided tour to learn about the places and events that shaped the city's LGBTQ+ community.
Food and Beverage Events
22. Pride Brunch
Restaurants across the city host special Pride-themed brunches. Enjoy a delicious meal in a festive atmosphere. Here's one on a patio on Halsted worth checking out!
23. Rainbow Food Tour
A tour around the city's eateries that serve rainbow-themed foods for Pride Month. It's a feast for the eyes as well as the palate!
24. Pride Cocktail Crawl
Explore Chicago's vibrant bar scene with a special cocktail crawl. Many bars create unique Pride-themed cocktails for the occasion. Experience a unique blend of freedom and fun at the Crawl With Us Bar Crawl, popularly known as "Make Your Own Adventure Crawls". With a vast selection of bars offering exclusive drink specials and various exciting activities, we empower you to create your personalized adventure. We consciously avoid the rigid "bar 1, bar 2, bar 3" structure as our events often draw large crowds. This approach ensures everyone gets to enjoy their drinks without enduring long queues. So, join us, chart your own journey, and celebrate Pride in your style!
25. Simply show your pride.
However you choose to celebrate Pride Month, the most important thing is to show your support for the LGBTQ+ community. You can do this in small, everyday ways, such as by wearing rainbow-themed attire, supporting LGBTQ+ businesses, or simply expressing your allyship to those around you.
So there you have it! From parades and parties to quieter forms of celebration, there's a whole city's worth of Pride activities waiting for you in Chicago and the suburbs. Enjoy the celebrations and Happy Pride Month!