Chicago Pride Parade organizers 'cautiously optimistic' parade can be held in 2021

Thu. March 11, 2021 1:21 PM by Kevin Wayne

chicago pride parade, 2019

photo credit // steven koch

Chicago Pride Parade organizers to apply for 2021 permit

Organizers of the annual Chicago Pride Parade confirmed to plans to file a permit application for a parade in 2021. This comes as the Chicago City Council Special Events Committee on Wednesday authorized a full calendar of the special events for 2021.

Those city-sponsored events include Taste of Chicago, the Air and Water Show, and the Jazz and Gospel festivals.

Just last week, Mayor Lori Lightfoot asked the Chicago Police to prepare for large summer events as the number of coronavirus cases are dropping and more Illinoisans receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

According to the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, at least 18 upcoming events have already applied for special event permits, including Bike the Drive 2021, Chicago Triathlon and Printer's Row Arts Festival. The Chicago Pride Parade was not among the current permit applicants.

On Thursday, parade organizer Tim Frye told that he remains in communication with city officials and plans to apply for the necessary permit next week. In previous years, Frye and husband, Richard Pfeiffer, applied for a permit in early December for the following year. However, according to Frye, the city wasn't accepting permit applications at that time.

The annual parade is traditionally slated for the last Sunday in June, but hopes for June 27, 2021 remain tempered.

“We are waiting for municipal guidance for a late summer/early fall Pride Parade,” Fyre said. “We're cautiously optimistic that we can go forward – maybe a little later than usual - this year.”

The wait for an official announcment, including date, continues as the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events won't issue any permits until at least March 31 to ensure it's safe to hold the events under pandemic mitigation efforts.

The Chicago Pride Parade was canceled in 2020, marking a first in its 50-year history. will continue to provide updates.