What To Do In New York During Pride Month 2019

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Come out and celebrate the biggest party of the year in New York City! A month-long list of festivities awaits your enthusiastic participation in the name of equal rights, and it’s gonna be a blast. June 2019 isn’t just another Pride month kicking off the summer on the right foot. This year is the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and the birth of the LGBTQ movement, so the community is totally swinging out this first half a century with a bang. And all are invited! Here is a list of all the events you should not miss this Pride month 2019.

 

2019 marks a very special anniversary!

2019 is a huge year for the LGBTQ community. This year marks 50 years since The Stonewall Uprising, one of the single most defining events of gay activism to have ever occurred in the world, and which took place right here in New York City’s Greenwich Village neighborhood in Lower Manhattan.

stonewall-bar-new-yorkPhoto: Ted Eytan/Flickr CC

This year’s celebration of Pride month during the whole month of June will thus be marked by 50 years of LGBTQ liberation, culminating with the 6th edition of WorldPride, a major LGBTQ worldwide event created in 2000. 4 million people from all around the globe are expected to flock to NYC for these 30 days of rallies, parties, lectures, films screenings, musical performances, art installations, and more.

 

The Stonewall Uprising: A bit of History

The Stonewall Uprising also called the Stonewall Riots or the Stonewall Rebellion took place at a well-known gay bar called The Stonewall Inn at 43 Christopher Street in Greenwich Village in June of 1969. As homosexual relations between consenting adults was illegal in NYC back in 1969, gay bars were places of refuge for LGBTQ persons. However as the LGBTQ community was routinely harassed and on constant police surveillance, these bars, too, were often raided by police resulting in gays, lesbians, and transsexuals often being verbally and physically assaulted, and arrested.

stonewall-monument-nycThe Stonewall monument – Photo: Ted Eytan/Flickr CC 

In the early hours of June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Inn was routinely being raided by police, yet this time nearly 400 people, consisting of its patrons as well as those from nearby establishments joined in on a riot against the police which lasted about 45 minutes, and resumed over the next 5 nights. These protests are the defining moments that officially gave birth to the organization of large-scale LGBTQ pride marches, and are ultimately why Gay Pride happens each June worldwide. What had begun as an essentially spontaneous protest against perpetual police harassment and social discrimination experienced by the LGBTQ community up to then has become a worldwide official event. President Bill Clinton was the first American President to officially declare June “Gay & Lesbian Pride Month” back in 1999. Not only is the month of June recognized around the world as being associated with the festive and colorful Gay Liberation celebration, but also President Barack Obama, in 2016, designated the 7.7-acre site of the Stonewall uprising a national monument: The Stonewall Inn, Christopher Park, and surrounding streets and sidewalks.

 

WorldPride 2019 Events: The events you should not miss

This year’s Pride event is not just the largest one to date because of its significant 50-year mark. It is also one of the biggest events of the year to hit the City! As mentioned above, New York City is expected to welcome 4 million people, twice as many as last year, and there are indeed more than enough activities and events planned for you (or for you to custom-make yourself) in order to make the most of this worldwide, multicolored, multi-event gala in support of equality, respect, dignity and pride of the LGBTQ community.

Photo: Ted Eytan/ Flickr CC

More than 50 official events can be found here from dozens of free rallies, performances, film screenings, parties, lectures, street fairs, and more. Here are our Top 8 picks of WorldPride events to attend this monumental year.

1/ NYC Pride Ride (Free)
Sunday, June 2nd at Riverbank State Park (Hudson Greenway at 145th St.)
Come join the fully supported ride of 30 to 100 miles through New York and New Jersey. The ride finishes with a food-filled festival at the finish line!

2/ OutCinema is back on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday June 17, 18, and 19 (7pm-11pm) at SVA Theatre (333 W. 23rd St.). Screened films will be Adam, Deep in Vogue, and WIG, all 2019 releases and film festival winners. Films will be followed by a Q & A, open bar, and an after party. Click here for tickets.

3/ Human Rights Conference (Free)
June 24-25, 9am-5pm, New York Law School (185 W. Broadway)
Come listen to and meet some of the most prolific activists, artists, educators, journalists, and policymakers involved in human rights throughout the world to discuss the current state of affairs in human rights particularly within the LGBTQ community.

lgbtq-pride-new-yorkPhoto: See-ming Lee/Flickr CC

4/ Worldpride Opening Ceremony
Wednesday June 26th at Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn from 7pm-10pm
Come celebrate the official opening ceremony! Tickets start at $45.00. Whoopi Goldberg is hosting the event, and Cyndi Lauper, Chaka Khan, Ciara, and many more will perform.

5/ Rally: Stonewall 50 Commemoration (Free)
Friday, June 28th from 6pm-9pm near Stonewall Inn on the corner of Christopher St. & Waverly Place
Come and join community activists, organizers, and politicians to rally against the current political environment’s attack on the LGBTQ community.

6/ NYC Pride March (Free)
Sunday June 30 2019, step off at Noon on the corner of 26th Street and 5th Avenue near Madison Square Park.
Join the tons of supporters in full on costume, carrying flags, signs, and wearing Pride gear in the name of equality.

7/ Pridefest
After the march, head to the food, music, exhibitors, and performances at the street fair (free) on 4th Avenue between Union Square and Astor Place, Sunday June 30 from 11am-6pm.

8/ Worldpride Closing Ceremony
Sunday June 30 in Times Square from 7pm-10pm
Come conclude the month-long festivities with exciting performances from Grammy-award winner Melissa Ethridge, as well as Deborah Cox, Jake Shears, MNEK, and more as well as interesting talks from influential speakers. This event is free but registration is required.

With a long list of so many different activities to choose from during this month of June 2019, how could anyone resist celebrating this year’s WorldPride in New York City? Whether you simply have drinks in a bar in the West Village along Christopher St. (especially AT Stonewall Inn), or you join in on the Parade on June 30th and stay for the festivities afterwards, you’ll be glad you participated in such a prodigious local & worldwide cultural celebration. Kick off summer 2019 on the right foot with this not-to-miss bash of month-long parties and events. Let loose and just be you!

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If you are interested in finding more to do in New York City, search through our complete range of tours, attractions and activities. We can also tailor-make programs specifically to match your desires and budgets. Harlem Spirituals is the ideal one-stop-shop to simplify your planning! Find more information on www.harlemspirituals.com.