Capital Pride Festival (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)
There’s more going on this weekend than any single person could ever get to. Here are the official highlights.
• The D.C. Front Runners have their Pride Run 5K this evening (Friday) at 7 p.m. starting at Congressional Cemetery (1801 E St., S.E.). Cost is $40 or $30 for those under 21. Visit dcfrontreunners.org for details.
• Blast Off!, the official Pride opening party from Brightest Young Things and Capital Pride, has its “spaaaaaaaace party” tonight at 9 p.m. at Union Market (1309 5th St. N.W.). Tickets are $25 at the door.
• The 39th annual Pride Parade kicks off Saturday at 4:30 p.m. at 22nd and P streets, N.W. and travels 1.5 miles through Dupont Circle and 17th Street by Logan Circle and ends at 14th and S streets. About 150,000 watch the parade each year, which features around 170 floats/contingents. A “review stand” is located at 15th and P. The first contingent is expected there around 5 p.m. The final contingents should arrive there about 7:15 p.m. Marriott is this year’s parade sponsor.
For the first time, an Armed Forces Color Guard from the Department of Defense will present and retire colors at the parade. Organizers say they’re excited about “this significant step forward for the community as a whole and particularly for those LGBT members of the armed forces.”
Former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe, an LGBT ally, will serve as grand marshal.
• The Cherry Fund will host an after party in the wee hours — from 3:30-9:30 a.m. Sunday at Tropicalia (2001 14th St. N.W.) featuring DJs David Merrill and Benny K. Tickets are $35 and are available at cherryfund.org.
• And on Sunday, the Capital Pride Street Festival will be held in its usual spot on Pennsylvania Ave., between 3rd and 7th streets, where the Capitol Stage, with the U.S. Capitol visible just behind, has been a tradition for 18 years. Festival exhibit hours are noon-7 p.m. and will feature 300 sponsors/vendors, three stages, two beverage gardens, a family area, numerous food vendors and headline performances by Karmin, Bonnie McKee, DJ Cassidy and Betty Who. The festival typically draws about 200,000 people. A $10-20 donation is requested.
Those attending the festival will have a chance to participate in the Future is Here, a “time machine” project from the National LGBT Museum and Capital Pride in which participants can record oral histories in video booths that are being collected for next year’s 40th anniversary Capital Pride. The Future is Here is also a family and educational activity area at the festival with a moon bounce, water slide, refreshments and more.
Out DJ Tracy Young will spin at the Capitol Sunset Closing Party just after the festival.