Just last year, Pride in St. Petersburg brought a quarter of a million people to the city. There were more than 7,000 participants in the parade and more than 200 festival vendors. This means that the support of the LGBT community in the Tampa/St. Pete area is overwhelmingly positive and present, and next year is expected to be even bigger. St. Pete Pride 2020 kicks off Friday, June 26th and ends with a bang on June 28th.
There are a few area events happening before the festival officially kicks off, so if you wanted to head to town early, be sure to check out the Pride Kick-Off Party that is completely free!
Here’s a rundown of the event in 2019 so you know what to expect next year:
On the 20th, there was the Stonewall St. Pete Pride Reception for all the art enthusiasts, which was held at the Museum of Fine Arts and featured an open bar and hors d’oeuvres. Then, officially, there was the SP2 concert on Friday evening, which was the first of two. Lisa Loeb headlined the June 21st show at North Straub Park and general admission was free! On Saturday, June 22nd, Rita Ora headlined the second festival concert, and that one was also free! For both shows, VIP tickets were available and offered unique perks for each artist. The three-day event is always packed full of exciting and varied events for guests. There’s a street food and craft beer festival within the festival and there’s the Pride Gayla, which calls for your jazziest clothes and shiniest shoes.
The biggest Pride event is perhaps the final-day street festival on Sunday. It’s always expected to draw tens of thousands of people and is the largest community event of the season. It’s open for all and features live performances, entertainment, arts and crafts, vendors, and of course, great food! The street festival is typically from 11am to 5pm at the Grand Central District. If you’re traveling to the city for Pride and looking for accommodations, Hilton has great hotels to suit every budget and need. The Hilton St. Petersburg Bayfront is conveniently located in downtown St. Petersburg’s waterfront district. The Hampton Inn & Suites St. Petersburg/Downtown is also in a great location and offers free hot breakfast and complimentary high-speed WiFi.
The mission of St. Pete Pride is to “promote unity, visibility, self-esteem and a positive image of and among the LGBT community of Tampa Bay by way of cultural and educational programs and activities.”