[Image by Burke Bischoff]

Events to Enjoy During This Year's New Orleans Pride

07:00 May 16, 2024
By: Janay Major

Full of Pride

New Orleans Pride is returning, and it's time to relish in the festivities. Pride will be enthralling, but most importantly the festivites will honor the activism and sacrifices needed to create safe spaces for gay and queer people. Queer people have been a part of New Orleanian society since her conception. Prior to World War II, queerness and homosexuality were categorized more as an act and not identity. Although New Orleans had a notable laissez-faire environment even then, same-sex interactions were only conditionally accepted.

The fermenting community emerged shortly after World War II and iconic bars Dixie's Bar of Music and Café Lafitte in Exile served as safe spaces. With more safe havens popping up and numbers increasing, gay New Orleanians challenged Louisiana's conservative laws and demanded equality and protection of their civil rights.

Now, let's properly prepare for the fun! New Orleans Pride is approaching; ditch the fear, grab your best queer, and bring your tassels here. More information can be found on the official NOLA Pride website.

[Courtesy of NOLA Black Pride's Website]

1. 2024 New Orleans Pride Gala (June 1)

Be the belle of the ball at the 2024 New Orleans Pride Gala. Join community members and allies at this formal event to celebrate love and inclusivity. The gala will be at the LaBranche House in the French Quarter. The dress code is rainbow formal, and the event will began at 7 p.m. It will be a fabulous night of food, drinks, and good times! Tickets start at $100 and fluctuate depending on the VIP package.

2. Black Queer Legacy Summit (June 7)

Grab your friends and enjoy a day of inspiration, empowerment, and education. New Orleans Black Pride is hosting the Black Queer Legacy Summit, an all-day event filled with networking opportunities, panels, and thought-provoking presentations. There will also be a talent showcase featuring talented creatives. Breakfast and lunch will be available for attendees. The event will be held at the New Orleans Marriott Warehouse Arts District, and the event is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The tickets are free for general admission. Please register on the NOLA Black Pride website.

3. Pride Fest (June 8)

Louisiana's biggest LGBTQIA+ celebration is back and eager to get even bigger. Pride Fest 2024 will began at the Phoenix Bar from 11a.m. to 5 p.m. There will be vendors and live entertainment, including the Queen Diva herself, Big Freedia. She is returning to Pride Fest to shut the stage down once again! General admission is free. If you would like to donate to help nonprofits, please visit NOLA Pride Fest's website.

4. Black Queer Community Fest (June 8)

New Orleans Black Pride is hosting Black Queer Community Fest, a day of honoring and celebrating prolific Black queer leaders who risked their lives to create and protect communal spaces for queer Black and brown people. The event will be held at Louis Armstrong Park and will run from 1-8 p.m. There will be art vendors, food vendors, entertainment, and musical performances. A special musical guest will be performing at the festival this year, so you definitely don't want to miss out on the surprise. The best part about it? General admission is free! Come out and join community members and allies!

5. NOLA Pride Parade 2024 (June 8)

NOLA Pride Parade will follow after Pride Fest. The parade will begin to line up at 6 p.m. in the Marigny. The parade route will go around the French Quarter, stop by the Black Queer Community Fest, and end near Bourbon and St. Anne. The parade will run from 7-11 p.m. Bring your fiercest friends, wear most fabulous outfit, and have a great time!

[Courtesy of NOLA Black Pride's Website]

Cheers to the Queers

As we celebrate and uplift the queer community, we must never forget to acknowledge the struggle of acceptance Black and brown queer people endured in the pursuit of complete liberation. As the queer community in New Orleans continued to grow following World War II, most of the gay spaces were white and discriminated against Black and brown queer people. It was unfortunate, but it was also not surprising since there were very little to no white spaces that were welcoming to Black and brown people anyway.

More often than not, Black and brown queer people find each other and create a community that actually showcase diversity and inclusion. It is because of prolific leaders like Marsha P. Johnson, Stormé DeLarverie, Wendi Cooper, Sylvia Rivera, and more who are unapologetic about their truth and unmoving about their stance for justice that the fight for true equality will never cease until it is achieved. NOLA Pride will be a festival of remembrance to reflect on how far we have come and how much further we need to go. It is also a festival of community, family, love, joy, and an unforgettable experience. Support the LGBTQIA+ community, have an amazing time, and join the movement for equal rights of all people.

None of us are free until everyone is free. Happy Pride.

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