June is Gay Pride month, and to celebrate, most large U.S. cities are hosting festivals and parades. Want in on the action? Here are the eight best Gay Pride festivals in the United States:

1. Seattle, Washington

Seattle's Pride week dates back to 1974, making it one of the oldest in the country. It hosts two major Pride festivals during June 23 and 24 -- the Capitol Hill Pride Festival and the PrideFest at Seattle Center. Most participants have commented that Seattle's Pride festivals feel inclusive with high energy.

2. New York City, New York

New York City is known for having one of the best Pride celebrations in the nation that's focused on queer history. In fact, New York City is the place where Gay Pride started. Both the Pride March and PrideFest take place on June 24, and thousands of participants are expected to join.

3. Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta Pride is the biggest Pride event in the Southwest -- over 200,000 people participate every year. Although the festival itself is held in October, Atlanta is hosting tons of LGBTQ events throughout June to commemorate Pride month, including the 14th Annual Evening for Equality.

4. San Francisco, California

San Francisco Pride begins on June 23 and ends on June 24 this year. It's the largest gathering of LGBTQ people and allies in the nation. It is estimated that over 1.5 people attended SF Pride in 2016, and around the same number is projected for this year, too.

5. Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is home to the Chicago Gay Pride Parade that takes place on the last Sunday in the month of June. This month it's held on June 24. The parade travels over 21 blocks along Broadway and usually draws over one million participants. Afterward, there is a post-parade bash in the parking lot behind Cheetah Gym.

6. Denver, Colorado

Denver PrideFest is June 16 and 17 this year and it's expected that over 300,000 people will join. There's plenty for everyone at this Pride festival, including a 5k race and a lesbian march. There's also a Coors Light PrideFest Parade that begins at Cheesman Park.

 

7. Austin, Texas

Austin celebrates Pride in August. This year its parade and festival are on August 11 at Fiesta Gardens. Over 400,000 people are expected to attend this year. Austin's gay clubs also host Pride pageants, which is not to be missed.

8. Orlando, Florida

Orlando's Come Out With Pride takes place in October of each year. This year it's on October 13. The Pride celebration features a Pride Marketplace with over 100 vendors. There's also expected to be tons of entertainment on multiple stages throughout the day. More than 150,000 people are expected to show up.

Happy Gay Pride Month!

Gay Pride month is all about celebrating inclusivity and diversity. Don't miss out on tons of parades, festivals and other events happening across the U.S. -- check out what's going on in your local city!

References
  1. "Some of America's Best Gay Pride Celebrations," USA Today, June 13, 2017.
  2. "The Best Cities to Celebrate Gay Pride," Time Out, May 10, 2017.
  3. "The Greatest Pride Celebrations in America, According to Drag Queens," Thrillist, May 31, 2018.

festivals | gay pride | pride month