It’s time to get ready for Pride 2018.
“This is such an important event to host every year,” said Fawn Faulks, president of Hampton Roads Pride. “It’s a way to celebrate and empower the LGBTQ community and their allies and to encourage others to own their uniqueness in a safe space. We not only want to have a good time but also educate the general public on issues that the LGBTQ community deals with, as well as share personal stories and struggles, issues and feelings. We want to express that we are all equal.”
This year’s 30th annual Hampton Roads PrideFest is packed with events and festivities. Here’s a list of what will be happening from now until June 30:
- DRAG BRUNCH — This pride fest edition of Drag Brunch encourages participants to come on down to the beach on Sunday, June 24 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Showtimes Croc’s 19th Street Bistro for a pre-party kickoff to Pride Week. There will be fundraisers, food, raffle prizes, drinks and drag queens.
- BEACH BEATS & BREWS — Participants are welcome to come to Smartmouth Pilot House to check out their latest creations. There will be dancing, DJ Matty, and performers from Mambo Room on Monday, June 25, from 6 to 9 p.m.
- INTERFAITH CELEBRATION — The Hampton Roads LGBTQIA InterFaith Group is celebrating this year’s Pride Week by joining with faith groups from all across Hampton Roads. This will be the 6th annual Interfaith Celebration. Anyone from any faith is welcome to come and participate on Tuesday, June 26 at 7 p.m. at the New Life Metropolitan Community Church.
- PRIDE ON PENINSULA — On June 27, Hampton Roads Pride will be celebrating the fourth annual Pride Party on the Peninsula. All free rides and entertainment will be at Carousel Park in Downtown Hampton, starting at 6 p.m. There will be complimentary food and beverages. Attendees will also be able to hop aboard the Miss Hampton II to celebrate the second annual Drag Down the River Boat Cruise.
- CRAFTY QUEENS — As Pride Weekend approaches, Hampton Roads Pride and O’Connor Brewing Company will be releasing the latest small-batch release and ‘Crafty Queen Shandies,’ on Thursday, June 28, starting at 6 p.m. Participants will be able to dance to beat of DJ Matty and enjoy the show of Mercedes Douglas and her Drag Race Girls.
- 7th ANNUAL BLOCK PARTY — Don’t miss out on “7 minutes in heaven,” at this year’s Block Party at the Norfolk Scope Arena on June 29. DJ Rays is expected to make an appearance and all proceeds will go toward the mission and goals of Hampton Roads Pride. The party will feature Live Art, Drag, and Heavenly Performers. Advance ticket prices are $12 and after June 25, tickets will be $15.
- BOAT PARADE — This is the nation’s only Pride Boat Parade. On June 30 starting at noon, the parade will take place at Town Point Park waterfront.
- PrideFest 2018 “Stand Up, Stand Out! 30 Years Strong!” — Saturday, June 30, will be the 30th annual celebration of Hampton Roads PrideFest. Artist Jussie Smollett will be performing on the main stage as well as the Hampton Roads Pride Mass Choir, Hampton Roads own Black Sheep, 4-Star Edition Navy Band, Miss Understood and The Rich Kids. There will also be beverages and local food, non-profit and informational vendors.