Palm Springs Pride Festival 2017 is almost here. For people who haven't ever been to this festival, as well as those who have come to previous festivals, this year's line-up is going to be impressive. The event is held on the first weekend of November, so time is running out to make your plans to come.
An Early Kickoff for This Year's Events
This year's festivities are starting early. Wednesday, October 25 is OUT PSP: A Kick Off to Pride Weekend. This event is taking place on the fourth floor outdoor patio of El Mirador Plaza. You can enjoy DJ Baz on the turntables and a host of offerings from Coachella Valley restaurants and bars. This event takes place from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets for this event are $50 up until October 14 or $75 after.
The George Zander Candlelight Vigil and March takes place at 6 p.m. on November 1. This is the second anniversary of the hate crime that killed George. The vigil starts in front of Grand Central and continues on with a march through Palm Springs. The goal of this vigil and march is to fight against hate crimes and bring acceptance and love to the area.
The Famous Street Party Officially Kicks Off the Weekend
The Vida la Vida Street Party is the first official event of the festival. It starts at 6 p.m. on November 3 at U.S. Bank Stage. The 21 and up party features Diva as the emcee and host. It continues on with San Francisco's Sheena Rose, Miss Rusty Waters and the ladies of Risque, and Iconique. You can finish off your night dancing to the beats of Jen DM at the free event.
The Main Festival Event
Saturday and Sunday, November 4 and 5, the Palm Springs Pride Festival is up and running. You can find a host of events and vendors taking place during the festival. On Saturday, the festival opens at 10 a.m. and closes at 10 p.m. On Sunday, the hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Two stages are up and running during the festival. The U.S. Bank Stage is the host of various music offers, such as Boynanarama, Z LALA, Mama Tits and more on Saturday, and DJ Galaxy, Ben Davis and more on Sunday. The Pride stage is home of a host of short entertainment offerings coming to you every 5-15 minutes, on average, throughout the day on Saturday and Sunday, with Bella da Ball serving as the emcee for this stage.
Fun Events Within the Festival
The 3rd Annual Dyke March starts at 4 p.m. on Saturday at Frances Stevens Park. The actual march to Arenas starts at 5:30 p.m. Once at the U.S. Bank Stage, the Dyke March rally runs from 6 to 6:15 pm. Then the real party gets started with Keisha D. and Drag King Jesse Jones taking the stage.
You can get ready for the world-famous parade by enjoying the Pre-Parade Breakfast from 8 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. on Sunday. The tickets for this event are $30 in advance, with the proceeds going to support Pride and the LGBT community. It is one block from the start of the parade and features screwdrivers, mimosas, Bloody Marys and a fruit buffet. DJ Luc Benech is the music master for this event.
The World-Famous Palm Springs Pride Parade
The world-famous Palm Springs Pride Parade, which is touted as the most scenic parade, kicks off at 10 a.m. on Sunday in the Uptown Design District at Tachevah and travel through the downtown area. It ends at the Pride Festival. More than 60,000 people come out to watch this amazing parade that flows along the streets lined in palm trees.
The cheering and support of the LGBT community is amazing during the parade. Palm Springs is a relatively small community, but it is rich in its acceptance of Pride and very inclusive of the visitors who flock to the area for these festivities. The parade is filled with music, floats and entertainment of all sorts.
The parade has multiple grand marshals this year. First and foremost is retired U.S. Navy SEAL Kristin Beck, who is a staunch supporter of the LGBT movement. She was born as Christopher Beck and participated in 13 deployments, seven of which were combat deployments. She received several awards, including a Purple Heart. She serves as the National Grand Marshal for Pride.
The Community Grand Marshal for Palm Springs is local restaurateur and singer-entertainer Michael Holmes. Two other Grand Marshals are Craig Ramsay and Brandon Liberati, who were married at the Riviera Resort in 2014. The parade is a free event and the highlight of Palm Springs Pride Festival.
While those are only the official events for Palm Springs Pride Festival weekend, there are many other events that complement the festive atmosphere of the weekend. Once you get to Palm Springs for the festival, you will find that the party doesn't ever really stop. The fun and laughter help to keep people coming back year after year for this one-of-a-kind celebration of inclusion, harmony, peace, love and acceptance.