June 9, 2011 at 2:34 pm EDT | by Juliette Ebner
Cox to headline Baltimore Pride

Baltimore Pride last year. (Blade file photo by Michael Key)

Baltimore Pride starts June 17 with a weekend of events including a performance by Deborah Cox.

First is Twilight on the Terrace at 7 p.m. June 17 at Gertrude’s Restaurant at the Baltimore Museum of Art (10 Art Museum Drive). Attendees will be able to enjoy hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, music and art. Tickets for this event are $85 and can be purchased online. Attendees must be 21 or older.

Then there’s the King and Queen of Pride pageant at The Hippo (1 W. Eager St.) at 10 p.m. that same night.

The annual high heel race begins at 3:30 p.m. on Charles and Eager streets. Racers can bring their own heels or borrow a pair and no pre-registration is required.

The Pride Parade will follow the race at 4 p.m. up Charles Street. The parade’s Grand Marshall is Sandy Rawls, Trans-United founder and director. Rawls is also the host of “The B-More Trans Show,” a 30-minute public awareness program educating the community about transgender issues.

Del. Mary Washington, who represents the 43rd Legislative District (Baltimore City) is the honorary grand marshall. Washington is the first out African American elected to a state office in Maryland.

After the parade is the Block Party from 6 to 10 p.m. featuring the main stage performances with headliner R&B and pop singer, Deborah Cox. There will be more than 75 vendors lining the streets and the Stoli Dance Tent at Cathedral and Eager streets.

New this year is stage-front VIP lounge access for 100 guests. Tickets are $50 and include seating 5 p.m. to close, VIP bar access, complimentary gift bags and battled water and an open bar sponsored by Svedka Vodka from 7 to 8 p.m.

Closing Baltimore Pride is the festival from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Druid Hill Park, located off of the I-83.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit baltimorepride.org.

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