June brings a rainbow of events for Pride Month to Boystown

Wed. June 1, 2016 7:41 AM by GoPride.com News Staff

chicago pride parade, 2015

photo credit // chicagopride.com

Pride Fest, the Chicago Pride Parade, and a host of other actives ramp up during the month of LGBT pride

Chicago, IL - As LGBT Pride Month sparks festivals and political movements around the globe in June, 'Chicago's Proudest Neighborhood' is ready to host some of the city's biggest events.

Both the pride parade and the annual street festival will stay in Boystown. Scheduled for June 18-19, Chicago Pride Fest takes over North Halsted Street from Addison to Grace every year, turning Boystown into a LGBT celebration with three entertainment stages.

Music stars Jordin Sparks, Dumblonde and Daya will each perform sets this year at Chicago Pride Fest, the Northalsted Business Alliance confirmed with ChicagoPride.com in April.

Pride Fest in the Windy City starts on Saturday, June 18 when American Idol Season 6 winner Jordin Sparks performs. Sparks is best known for her duet "No Air" with Chris Brown, and "One Step at a Time," both of which were released back in 2007. 

On Sunday, June 19, former Danity Kane members Aubrey O'Day and Shannon Bex take the stage as Dumblonde. Their indie pop debut has strong dance and alternative influences reminiscent of acts like The Ting Tings and La Roux. Daya, best known for her leading single "Hide Away", is also part of the Sunday entertainment line-up. 

"All of our events are known for their exceptional entertainment value and this year's Pride Fest is no exception," Northalsted Business Alliance Executive Director Christopher Barrett Politan told ChicagoPride.com. "With a mix of up and comers and festival favorites, there's something for everyone to enjoy."

The festival, which is the weekend prior to the annual Chicago Pride Parade, brings together tens of thousands of LGBT supporters annually. It runs from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. down North Halsted Street from Addison to Grace. Organizers suggest a $10 donation upon entering.

This year's Pride Fest motto is 'It's Your Story- Take Pride', a tie-in to NAB's recent collaboration with The Legacy Project, the world's only outdoor LGBT museum honoring the stories of LGBT pioneers. 

The 2016 Chicago Pride Parade, which now brings more than a million visitors to the Uptown and Lakeview neighborhoods of Chicago, is slated for Sunday, June 26 starting at noon. PRIDEChicago, the parade organizers, announced Wednesday that Chicago Fire star Monica Raymund will serve at the 2016 Grand Marshal. 

The festival and parade is coupled with other major LGBT celebrations in June, like the 35th annual Proud to Run 5K/10K run/walk and the high-concept themed dance party Neverland "The Lost Boys" that are both slated for June 25.

More than 100 other LGBT-focused events mark nearly every other day in June on the 2016 Chicago Pride Calendar.

Since the New York Stonewall riots in 1969, and the first Pride celebrations that followed, a multitude of events has emerged around the world. Today, over 60 countries have pride festivals that celebrate the LGBT communities.