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Festering frustration

Activists say police abuse is common link to gay, black riots



Baltimore riot, gay news, Washington Blade
Baltimore riot, gay news, Washington Blade

Some in the LGBT community questioned why Baltimore black youth would riot in their own neighborhoods, ignoring their own community’s history of rioting against police injustice. (Photo by Victoria Macchi/VOA News public domain)

The Stonewall riots triggered by a police raid on a New York City gay bar in 1969 and three other lesser known gay riots in San Francisco were reactions to police abuse and perceived societal oppression, according to LGBT activists familiar with those incidents.

San Francisco gay and AIDS activist Cleve Jones, who witnessed two of the gay riots in his city in 1979 and 1991, is among those who say there are similarities between the police abuse experienced by young gay men back in the 1960s and 1970s and young black men today.

Jones and other LGBT activists point to the incident involving 25-year-old African American Freddie Gray, whose death on April 19 from a severe spinal cord injury he sustained while in custody of Baltimore police triggered riots and looting.

Officials with several national LGBT rights groups, including the National Black Justice Coalition, have joined African-American civil rights leaders in denouncing the action by six Baltimore police officers who detained and arrested Gray on a charge of possessing a small knife that was later found to be legal to carry.

The groups said Gray’s death in a police-related incident, after officers reportedly ignored his pleas for medical treatment while being transported in a police wagon, highlighted similar instances of reported abuse by police against young black men in Baltimore and other parts of the country, including Ferguson, Mo.

“Where you can draw a parallel is with police relations,” Jones says. “I think to be a young gay person in San Francisco in the late 1970s, you would have many of the same kinds of feelings as young African Americans feel toward the police today.”

“When I got to San Francisco, the cops hated us. And they made it very, very clear every day,” Jones says. “I’m an old white man and unlikely to be singled out for my appearance for abuse by the police. But my memories of it from my youth are fresh.”

Jones was a student intern working for San Francisco Board of Supervisors member and gay rights advocate Harvey Milk in November 1978. It was at that time when Dan White, a disgruntled former police officer who had just resigned from his position as one of Milk’s fellow supervisors, shot Milk to death in Milk’s office at City Hall.

White killed Milk minutes after assassinating pro-gay San Francisco Mayor George Moscone in the mayor’s office in a fit of rage over Moscone’s refusal to reappoint White to his supervisor’s seat. White had announced he changed his mind and wanted to remain in office. Milk was among his fellow supervisors who urged Moscone not to reappoint White, who was part of a conservative faction on the Board of Supervisors that opposed Milk on many policy matters.

In May 1979, gays and other San Franciscans became outraged when a jury ignored prosecutors’ calls for convicting White on a first-degree murder charge and instead found him guilty of voluntary manslaughter, the most lenient possible charge for shooting two people to death.

Similar to the turn of events in Baltimore 36 years later, gays responded by holding a protest rally in the gay Castro neighborhood, which was Milk’s home base. They marched peacefully through the streets as the crowd swelled from about 500 to more than 1,500 people, according to news media accounts.

When the gathering of mostly LGBT people reached City Hall its ranks had increased to about 5,000, and violence broke out.

Police cars were set on fire, windows of nearby buildings were smashed and overhead wires for the city’s street cars were pulled down. Some of the rioters took tear gas canisters from damaged police cars and threw them at police, who initially stood on the sidelines at the direction of the police chief, again similar to the Baltimore disturbances this year, before the chief directed them to confront the rioters and force them away from the City Hall area.

About two-dozen arrests were made and more than 140 protesters and as many as 60 police officers were injured, news media reports said. The rioting caused hundreds of thousands of dollars in property damage to the City Hall building and nearby buildings and vehicles.

Jones, who was present when the rioting unfolded, said the longtime police hostility toward the gay community combined with the shock of a lenient jury verdict for the man who murdered Milk, a gay icon, prompted normally peaceful gays to embrace violence.

“I saw people who were known to be very well mannered who were completely consumed with rage and hatred of the police department,” he said. “It was a real desire to fight back, a sense that we had taken this kind of crap for far too long. … I think the LGBT people who were there that night — within all of us — the memories of prior abuses, the reality that we had been beaten up and called names and put down for so long — and then it was the last straw — that this all white, straight jury basically gave him a slap on the wrist.”

Compton’s Cafeteria Riot pre-dates Stonewall

New York’s Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village in 1969, where gays and transgender people fought back against a police raid, is considered the historic development that started the modern LGBT rights movement.

But three years earlier, in August 1966, a confrontation between a police officer and a person witnesses described as a drag queen inside Compton’s Cafeteria in San Francisco’s Tenderloin section erupted into what has become known as Compton’s Cafeteria Riot.

Transgender historian Susan Stryker, who co-wrote and co-directed a documentary film about the incident in 2005 called “Screaming Queens: The Riot at Compton’s Cafeteria,” is credited with helping piece together a comprehensive report on what happened.

LGBT activists are now calling the incident one of the first known transgender riots in U.S. history based on reports that Compton’s was a hangout for people who today would be considered transgender women.

Also patronizing Compton’s Cafeteria in the Tenderloin were the trans women’s gay male and lesbian friends. Nearly all of them, the documentary film says, were struggling to survive at a time when they were considered outcasts. Most lived in nearby cheap rooming houses and many engaged in prostitution. Most were also often harassed by the police at a time when cross dressing was against the law, Stryker reports in the documentary film.

According to the film, the riot started when a police officer threatened to arrest one of the male-to-female cross dressers inside Compton’s and she threw her coffee in his face. People interviewed in the film, which can be viewed on YouTube, said a melee then broke out among police and as many as 50 people inside the establishment, with windows shattered and dishes and furniture tossed around the room.

The fighting soon moved outside the restaurant, people in the film reported, creating a disturbance considered a full-fledged riot on the street.

“The violent oppression (and riot) of transgender people at Compton’s Cafeteria did not solve the problems that transgender people in the Tenderloin faced daily,” said transgender activist Autumn Sandeen in a 2010 article about the incident in “It did, however, create a space in which it became possible for the city of San Francisco to begin relating differently to its transgender citizens — to begin treating them, in fact, as citizens with legitimate needs instead of simply as a problem to get rid of.”

AB 1 Riots triggered by veto of gay rights bill

The fourth known gay riot in the United States took place in San Francisco on Sept. 30, 1991, after then-Republican Gov. Pete Wilson vetoed Assembly Bill 1, a gay rights measure that called for banning discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations based on sexual orientation.

The bill had been stalled in committee for years before both houses of the legislature finally passed it in September 1991. Gay activists and their supporters in the legislature were outraged over Wilson’s veto, saying he acquiesced to the anti-gay faction of the state’s Republican Party.

“As was the case in the White Night riots, a large crowd assembled in the Castro and stormed the civic center,” says Jones, who was present as the crowd grew and became increasingly angry. “But instead of stopping at City Hall they went to the state building and did their best to set it on fire.”

A short documentary film on the AB 1 Riot, which included TV news footage of the incident, says about 2,000 protesters marched to the state building, where Wilson had an office. Protesters can be seen in the film using sections of metal barricade fences as battering rams to smash through the building’s glass doors.

The film also shows a protester using a large pole with a rainbow flag attached to it to smash through the glass doors on the building. It says the rioting caused over $250,000 in damage to the building, but no arrests were made and no serious injuries were reported.

‘Intersection’ between Baltimore and LGBT rights movement

Officials with some of the national LGBT groups talked about what they called the intersection between the Baltimore riots in late April of this year and the LGBT civil rights movement.

“The recent events in Baltimore and throughout the nation have been emotional, hurtful and even traumatic for so many in the black community,” says Sharon Lettman-Hicks, executive director and CEO of the National Black Justice Coalition, an LGBT civil rights organization.

“At the National Black Justice Coalition, we are dedicated to changing the mainstream narrative around socially marginalized black people, especially young people, because issues like police brutality and economic injustice are also LGBT issues that disproportionately impact LGBT people of color.”

“Black LGBT people cannot separate their blackness from their sexual orientation, gender expression or gender identity,” she says. “Issues that confront black people — like structural oppression, classism and racism in America — impact black LGBT people twofold.”

Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, says transgender people often face “brutal victimization, mistreatment and violence at the hands of law enforcement.”

She says NCTE works to address police abuse not only for transgender people but for everyone in its quest for “a more just society.”

According to Keisling, at least one transgender woman who was arrested during the Baltimore disturbances was placed in a men’s jail after police learned she was transgender. She was “forced to remove her undergarments and made to reveal her body to officers,” Keisling says.

“Our hearts go out to the family of Freddie Gray and to those people whose hearts are broken with grief,” says Rea Carey, executive director of the National LGBTQ Task Force. “Police-related killings of young black men have become a regular occurrence across our nation. So in a very real way what is happening in Baltimore is a predictable reaction to appalling injustice, deep mistrust of police and a real sense that nothing will be done about it.”

“The beauty and responsibility of the LGBT community is that we’re at the intersection of everything,” says Human Rights Campaign Vice President Fred Sainz. “We’re black, Asian, Latino and everything in between.

“Because of the stigma we face and the lack of legal protections, LGBT people are also more likely to face economic disenfranchisement,” he says. “What all of this means is that this must be a shared struggle and we also have a responsibility to make life better for all Americans.”


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What’s new at Rehoboth Beach for summer 2024

Higher parking fees, Pamala moves to Diego’s, and more



Rehoboth favorites Magnolia Applebottom and Pamala Stanley are reunited this summer at Diego’s. (Blade file photo by John Bator)

Another Rehoboth Beach season is upon us. I have been going to the beach for more years than I can count, and always love it. Some now consider Rehoboth a year-round community, and in many ways they are right. But summer still brings out tens of thousands of tourists, from day-trippers, to those with second homes at the beach. Others book a weekend, or longer, at the many great hotels. They all come to the beach for the sun and sand, food, and drink. Some like to relax, others to party, and you can do both in Rehoboth. 

So here is some of the good (and a little of the bad) of what’s new this season. First the bad: Parking at a meter will now cost you $4 an hour. Meters are in effect May 15-Sept. 15. Parking permits for all the non-metered spaces in town are also fairly expensive. You can find information on both transferable and individual permits, online.

Now for the good — and there is lots of it. First, Aqua Bar & Grill has reopened for the season. During Women’s Fest they were packed, with many sitting around the outdoor heaters, and that included lots of good looking men. I recommend taking advantage of the Tuesday Burger night. Then the Blue Moon just announced John Francis Flynn will be on the piano from May 26-June 26, Sunday to Thursday, 6-8:30 p.m. He will then be back again on the same schedule from July 30-Sept. 11. During July, Nate Buccieri returns to town for a month-long runs of shows.

My favorite place at the beach, The Coffee Mill, in the mews between Rehoboth and Baltimore Avenues, opens every morning at 7 a.m. Whenever I am at the beach I am there. Mel, who also owns Brashhh! on 1st Street, announced he is starting his own clothing line, called FEARLESS! 

The Purple Parrot, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year so be sure to spend some time there raising a glass. The Summer House last year opened the upscale Libation Room, with drinks like a Bacon Maple Old Fashioned. This year, they opened a nice garden looking out on Rehoboth Avenue, with a fountain. With the renewed interest in vinyl records you may want to stop in at Extended Play. Traveling a little beyond the town is the new 302 Local, located in Coastal Station behind Iron Hill Brewery. It is themed as a 1920s-era speakeasy. If you are in town on a Sunday for T-dance, you will have the chance to hear Pamala Stanley perform at Diego’s Bar and Nightclub. This is the perfect venue for Pamala’s talents in an indoor-outdoor setting that is already drawing packed crowds. Don’t miss it. Speaking of Diego’s, Pamala and Best Rehoboth Drag Queen winner Magnolia Applebottom are reunited there this summer. Don’t miss Magnolia’s Memorial Day Thursday party on May 23 from 8-10 p.m. featuring “naughtee bingo.”

If you are looking for culture Rehoboth has some of that as well. There’s Clear Space Theater on Baltimore Avenue. This year’s shows include The Bodyguard, The Roommates, Jersey Boys, Rock of Ages and The Prom. Tickets sell fast so I suggest you book early and they are available online. Then there is the Pride Film Festival, June 14-16. More information on that can be found at CAMP Rehoboth, the LGBTQ community center. CAMP plans the annual Sunfestival each Labor Day weekend, a not-to-miss event each year. On the CAMP website you can also find information on its speaker series, concerts, and other special events that will be going on during summer. This year Rehoboth Beach Pride takes place July 18-21. Sussex Pride is taking the lead on the festival, which will happen at the Convention Center July 20 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. If you visit CAMP, or are just walking up Baltimore Avenue, make sure you pick up a copy of the Blade in the box in front of the building.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention some of the other restaurants and clubs in town. Just a reminder, during season you often need reservations. Come to the beach often enough, and you can try them all: The Pines (and their Monday steak night) and Top of the Pines are at the epicenter of the fun on Baltimore Avenue. Freddie’s Beach Bar and Restaurant offers a busy summer of events and entertainment. Rigby’s remains a go-to spot for the LGBTQ community on Rehoboth Avenue. Bodhi Kitchen is back in its second year offering delicious modern Asian cuisine “with a twist.” These are only a few of the great places to eat and drink at the beach.

Remember to book your reservations for hotels and restaurants early. Rehoboth is a happening place and very busy. Here’s wishing you fun at the beach. 

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‘RuPaul’s Drag Race: All Stars’ cast visits D.C.

8 queens vie for $200,000 prize for charity in new season, premiering May 17



The cast of the latest ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars’ season sashayed on the National Mall to promote the reality show's ninth season on Monday. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for MTV; used with permission)

Donning sparkling and star-studded red, white, and blue attire on a gloomy, humid D.C. Monday, the cast of the latest “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” season sashayed on the National Mall to promote the reality show’s ninth season.  

This upcoming season is different than those in the past — eight queens are competing for a donation of $200,000 for the charity of their choosing, rather than a personal cash prize. 

Several cast members noted how it felt important to visit the nation’s capital, being authentically themselves and wearing drag. Nina West, who competed in season 11, likened drag to armor. 

“We’re here during a really specific time in history, that’s, I would say, markedly dark,” she told the Blade at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. “And there’s an opportunity, as drag has always done, which is for our community as specifically LGBTQI+ people, to stand in our truth and be wonderful — like guardians and fighters for our community.” 

She’s competing for the Trevor Project, which is focused on suicide prevention and crisis intervention for young LGBTQ people. This season’s pivot to compete for charity made Nina West want to come back on the show for the All Stars season. She’s been offered the spot two times before this, she said, and this twist aligned with what she wanted to do. 

Several of the other queens mentioned that it’s an honor to be featured in this season, including season 5’s Roxxxy Andrews. She also competed in two subsequent All-Stars seasons. 

She chose the organization Miracle of Love, which provides HIV/AIDS prevention programming and assistance in central Florida. It’s a smaller, more local organization, which is why Roxxxy Andrews chose it. She wants to make its work more nationally known. Also, vying to win during a charity season makes the competition feel more rewarding, she said. 

Plastique Tiara of season 11 also noted it’s different competing for charity. She’s competing for the Asian American Foundation, which launched in 2021 in response to the rise in anti-Asian hate and aims to curb discrimination and violence through education and investments in nonprofits. 

“It’s more competitive because then you’re fighting not just only for yourself, but your ideas and the things that you love,” she said. 

Vanessa Vanjie of seasons 10 and 11 agreed that competing for charity adds a bit more pressure — she chose the ASPCA. And as onlookers near the Lincoln Memorial took pictures of and with the queens, she said she was relieved. 

“I was a little bit worried somebody would yell some slurs at us,” Vanessa Vanjie said. “Nothing happened. Everybody came to take pictures like Santa Claus in the middle of the mall.”

There’s a range of contestants from different seasons for this round of All Stars. Some queens hail from recent seasons, but Shannel competed on the show’s first season. To be a part of this new season is surreal, she said. 

She’s competing for the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, which she has a close tie to. She’s dealt with anxiety her entire life. The association is focused on increasing awareness and improving diagnosis and treatment. 

“I always felt like I just wasn’t normal, sadly,” she said. “And so now being able to be able to do this season and to get back to that organization is like amazing to me.”

Gottmik, from season 13, is competing for Trans Lifeline — a nonprofit providing advocacy, a hotline and grants created by trans people, for trans people. Being able to do drag and give back is the “perfect scenario,” Gottmik said. 

Gottmik was the first openly trans man on Drag Race, which was overwhelming when first on the show. Gottmik felt pressure to be the “perfect example,” but later realized that they didn’t have to worry so much. 

“I just want to show people that trans people are real people. We can express ourselves however we want to express ourselves, through drag, through whatever it may be,” Gottmik said. 

The new season will be available to stream on Paramount+ on May 17. 

The cast of RuPaul’s Drag Race pose with White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre at The Little Gay Pub on Monday. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for MTV; used with permission)
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Pride season has begun

LGBTQ parades, festivals to be held throughout region in coming months



A scene from last Sunday’s Pride festival in Roanoke, Va. (Blade photo by Michael Key)

LGBTQ Pride festivals, parades and other events have been scheduled in large cities and small towns throughout the region. Pride events around the world culminate in June, but organizers in some municipalities have elected to hold celebrations in other months.

Pride in the region has already begun with last weekend’s Mr., Miss, and Mx. Capital Pride Pageant held at Penn Social as well as Roanoke Pride Festival held in Elmwood Park in Roanoke, Va.

Below is a list of Pride events coming to the region.


Capital Trans Pride is scheduled for 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday, May 18 at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library (901 G St., N.W.). The website for the event advertises workshops, panel discussions, a keynote address, a resource fair and more.

Equality Prince William Pride is scheduled for 12-4 p.m. on May 18 at the Harris Pavilion (9201 Center St.) in historic downtown Manassas, Va.

D.C. Black Pride holds events throughout the city May 24-27. Highlights include an opening reception, dance parties and a community festival at Fort Dupont Park. The Westin Washington, DC Downtown (999 9th St., N.W.) is the host hotel, with several events scheduled there.

NOVA Pride and Safe Space NOVA will hold NOVA Pride Prom from 7-11 p.m. on May 31 at Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria, Va. The event is open to all high school students throughout the region, regardless of identity, from rising ninth grade students to graduating seniors.

Capital Pride Honors will be held on May 31. The Capital Pride Alliance has announced on its website that nominations are open for awardees. The Honors celebrates excellence in the LGBTQ community and its allies.


Downtown Sykesville Connection is sponsoring Sykesville Pride Day in downtown Sykesville, Md. on June 1 from 12-4 p.m.

Reston Pride will be held at Lake Anne Plaza in Reston, Va. on June 1 from 12-6 p.m.

Fairfax Pride, hosted by the City of Fairfax and George Mason University, will be held at Old Town Hall (3999 University Drive, Fairfax, Va.) on June 1 from 5-7 p.m. The event will include children’s activities and more.

OEC Pride celebrates Pride with “art, dance, education, and fun” in Old Ellicott City.  The OEC Pride Festival is held along Main Street in Ellicott City, Md. on June 1 from 10 a.m.-10 p.m.

Annapolis Pride has consistently drawn a giant crowd for a parade and festival in the quaint downtown of the Maryland capital. “The Voice” star L. Rodgers has been announced to headline the 2024 festival. The parade and festival will be held on June 1.

The Alexandria LGBTQ+ Task Force Alexandria Pride is scheduled to be held at Alexandria City Hall from 3 – 6 p.m. on June 1 in Alexandria, Va.

The Portsmouth Pride Fest will be held at Festival Park adjacent to the Atlantic-Union Bank Pavilion in Portsmouth, Va. on June 1 from 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

The Delaware Pride Festival is a free event scheduled for June 1 at Legislative Hall in Dover, Del. from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.The event is billed as family friendly and open to people of all ages and sexual orientations.

The City of Rockville is hosting Rockville Pride at Rockville Town Square (131 Gibbs St., Rockville, Md.) from 2-5 p.m. on June 2. The free event features live performances, information booths, and children’s activities.

Equality Loudoun is hosting the ticketed Loudoun Pride Festival from 1-7 p.m. on June 2 at Claude Moore Park in Sterling, Va. The event features three stages, a “#Dragstravaganza,” a kid’s zone, an alcohol pavilion, a food hall and more. Tickets $5.

Culpepper Pride is slated to be held at Mountain Run Winery in Culpepper, Va. from 12-6 p.m. on June 2. The theme this year is “True Colors.”

The Southwest Virginia Pride Cookout Community Social is planned for 2 p.m. at the Charles R. Hill Senior Center in Vinton, Va. on June 2. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.

Capital Pride kicks off with the RIOT! Opening Party at Echostage starting at 9 p.m. on June 7. Tickets run from $27-$50 and can be purchased on the Capital Pride website. The event is set to feature Sapphire Cristál.

Pride events continue over the weekend of June 8-9 in the nation’s capital with the Capital Pride Block Party featuring performers and a beverage garden, the massive Capital Pride Parade, Flashback: A totally Radical Tea Dance to be held at the end of the parade route, and the Capital Pride Festival and Concert. Visit for more information. Other Pride events planned for the weekend in D.C. include a number of parties and the unforgettable (and free) Pride on the Pier & Fireworks Show at the Wharf sponsored by the Washington Blade from 2-10 p.m.

Pride in the ‘Peake will be held at Summit Pointe (580 Belaire Ave.) in Chesapeake, Va. on June 9 from 12-5 p.m. The family-focused Pride event does not serve alcohol, but will feature community organizations, food trucks and more in a street festival. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.

Celebrate with a drag show, dancing and a lot of wine at Two Twisted Posts Winery in Purcellville, Va. for a Pride Party from 2-5 p.m. on June 15.

Baltimore Pride holds one of the largest Pride parades in the region on June 15 in Baltimore. (2418 Saint Paul St.). The parade concludes with a block party and festival. Pride events are scheduled from June 14-16.

The fourth annual Catonsville Pride Fest will be held at the Catonsville Presbyterian Church (1400 Frederick Rd.) in Catonsville, Md. on June 15 from 3-6 p.m. The event features a High Heel Race, pony rides, face painting, local cuisine and more. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.

The Ghent Business District Palace Shops have announced a Ghent Pride event from 5:30-9:30 p.m. on June 17 at the Palace Shops and Station (301 W 21st Street) in Norfolk, Va.

An event dedicated to celebrating the elders in the LGBTQ community, Silver Pride is scheduled for June 20 at 5:30-8:30 p.m. Location and more information to be announced soon.

Visit the Hampton Roads PrideFest and Boat Parade for a truly unique Pride experience along the Elizabeth River. The full day of entertainment, education and celebration will be held on June 22 from 12-7 p.m. at Town Point Park (113 Waterside Dr.) in Norfolk, Va.

Frederick, Md. will hold its annual Frederick Pride Festival at Carroll Creek Linear Park on June 22 from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Entertainers include CoCo Montrese of “RuPaul’s Drag Race.”

The fourth annual Pride at the Beach is scheduled for 2-10 p.m. on June 23 at Neptune’s Park (3001 Atlantic Ave.) in Virginia Beach, Va. The event features entertainment, community vendors, beachside DJ sets, food trucks and offers a “perfect conclusion to an unforgettable Pride weekend.”

Winchester Pride will hold its Mx. Winchester Pride Pageant at 15 N. Loudoun St. in Winchester, Va. on June 23 at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance/$25 at the door.

The organizers of last year’s inaugural Ocean City Pride with a “parade” along the boardwalk in Ocean City, Md. have announced that they will be organizing a return this year with events from June 28-30.

The third annual Arlington Pride Festival will be held at Long Bridge Park at National Landing (475 Long Bridge Dr.) in Arlington, Va. on June 29 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

FXBG Pride is holding its annual community Fredericksburg Pride March on June 29 from 10-11 a.m. at Riverfront Park (705 Sophia St.) in Fredericksburg, Va. Speeches begin at 10 a.m. and the procession starts at 10:30 a.m. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.

Salisbury Pride “90’s Edition” is scheduled for 3 – 7 p.m. on June 29 in Downtown Salisbury, Md. Magnolia Applebottom is listed as the headliner and grand marshal.

The 2024 Suffolk Pride Festival is scheduled for Bennett’s Creek Park in Suffolk, Va. on June 30 from 12-7 p.m. Visit the Facebook event page for more information.

Expect music, entertainment and drag performances in the picturesque mountain town of Cumberland, Md. at the Cumberland Pride Festival on June 30 from 12-4 p.m. at Canal Place.

Montgomery County’s annual Pride in the Plaza will be held on June 30 from 12-8 p.m. at Veterans Plaza (1 Veterans Place, Silver Spring, Md.


The sixth annual Westminster Pride Festival is scheduled for downtown Westminster, Md. on July 13 from 12-6 p.m.

Hagerstown Hopes is holding its annual Hagerstown Pride Festival in Doubs Woods Park (1307 Maryland Ave.) in Hagerstown, Md. on July 13 at 11 a.m. Visit the Facebook event page for more information.

The Rehoboth Beach Pride Festival will be held on July 20 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., with other Sussex Pride events scheduled throughout the weekend of July 18-21.

Us Giving Us Richmond hosts Black Pride RVA in Richmond, Va. with events on July 19-21.

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