If 2015 showed just how far the movement for LGBTQ rights in this country has come, with the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in favor of same-sex marriage nationwide, then 2016 showed just how far there is to go.
The June shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando and, closer to home, a series of attacks on gay men in the Oak Lawn neighborhood stand as reminders that hate and intolerance remain, even as the progress of equal rights moves inevitably forward. It’s one of the reasons Pride celebrations continue as an important show of solidarity, community, and bravery.
A Pride celebration, as anyone who’s been can attest, is also just a whole lot of fun.
Pride celebrations continue as an important show of solidarity, community, and bravery.
Dallas Pride is this weekend, with the main event — the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade starting at Cedar Springs and Wycliff and festival at Reverchon Park — set for Sunday.
This will be the festival’s second year at the park, a roomier locale than the nearby Lee Park and one that gives Pride room to grow, says Michael Doughman, executive director of the Dallas Tavern Guild, the association of LGBT nightclubs that organizes the event. Police are also stepping up security for this week’s festivities.
“We want to create an environment where people can celebrate without safety being a concern,” Doughman says.
There’s a chance of rain Sunday, which may force organizers to make some slight adjustments behind the scenes. Whatever the weather, it won’t diminish the celebration this weekend, Doughman says.
Keep reading for our guide to Pride, including the festival and parade and a number of other LGBTQ events this week in Dallas:
The Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade | Sunday at 2 p.m.
The parade, which should last for more than two hours, moseys along Cedar Springs Road from Wycliff Avenue to Turtle Creek Boulevard, ending at Reverchon Park. Merchant tents will be stationed along the mile-and-a-half route. Coolers and chairs are welcome, and while parking may be scarce, parade-goers can hop a free shuttle bus. The parade itself is free. Go here for more info.
The Festival in the Park | Sunday, noon to 7 p.m.
A general admission ticket into the festival at Reverchon Park will run for $10. (Children 12 and under, who may enjoy the games and kid-friendly entertainment in the returning Family PRIDE Zone, get in for free.) Live entertainment comes courtesy of singer and reality TV star Erika Jayne, local artists like the Big City Outlaws, and the winners of this year’s Voice of Pride competition.
Various Nightclub/Bar Events | All Weekend
It should prove to be a busy weekend for the LGBTQ nightclubs and bars along Cedar Springs and elsewhere, with each club hosting special events to entice guests. We’ll point you to the official list here so that you can sift through and decide which watering hole and/or pool party is right for you.
PlayPride LGBT Festival | Sept. 15-25
Work by six Texas playwrights is performed — while the audiences votes for its favorites — at the Bishop Arts Theatre Center. Go here for more info.
Dallas Pride Performing Arts Festival | Sept. 16-25
Eight days of LGBT-friendly “plays, cabaret acts, and staged readings” are on the schedule at Kalita Humphreys Theater, courtesy of Uptown Players. Go here for more info.
CineWilde: Dallas Buyers Club | Friday at 8:30 p.m.
CineWilde, the LGBT film series, will screen Dallas Buyers Club at the Texas Theatre. Come before the movie for a panel discussion with AIDS Arms, a local organization for men and women diagnosed with HIV or AIDS, and stay after to shop the “buyers club” of work by Dallas artists. Go here for more info.
After Dark: Benefitting the Turtle Creek Chorale | Friday at 8 p.m.
Cabaret and performances by local divas liven up this wine-and-dessert tasting and fundraiser for all the men’s chorus at 3015 at Trinity Groves. Go here for more info.
Teen Pride: A Celebration For All | Saturday, 2 to 7 p.m.
A free pride celebration for LGBTQ teenagers (ages 13 to 19) is at the Oak Lawn United Methodist Church, which will host speakers, games, food, and more. Go here for more info.