The thirteen best PrideFest 2013 events (both family-friendly and adults-only)
With the "Focus on the Families" theme setting the tone for this year's PrideFest, there will be celebrations all over the city this weekend. While the official focus of the all-inclusive family fun is The Center's Denver PrideFest 2013, which will be at Civic Center Park this Saturday, June 15 and Sunday, June 16, there are many more events around town. Here are some of the best, from fantastic family-oriented gatherings to adults-only throwdowns that will last all night long.
Thursday, June 13 Follow the Yellow Brick Road at Tracks (18 and up, 9 p.m., $5-10) Starting off a four-day weekend of Pride festivities at Tracks, this party kicks off the "There's No Place Like Home" theme. Tracks (and sister bar Eden) have been outfitted like Oz for the weekend, and guests are encouraged to dress up accordingly. DJ Markie and DJ Blaque Gurl will be holding down the turntables. Cover is $10 for those 18 to 21, $5 for those over 21 -- or purchase a weekend-long wristband for $50 tonight and get a no-waiting in-line VIP pass. For more information, visit the Tracks Nightclub website.
Friday, June 14 Keshet's Pride Shabbat at Cheesman Park Pavilion (Friday, June 14, 5:30 p.m. services, all ages, donation) Rabbi Evette Lutman and Sariel Beckenstein are leading the musical Shabbat service again this year; open to all denominations, the event brings LGBTQIA folks and allies together for a celebration in the park. Families are welcome to bring their own picnics and blankets for the gathering; Keshet just asks you to RSVP through its website.
Drag Nation: The Witches of Oz at Tracks "Tracks (Friday, June 15, 9 p.m., $15-$20) Named Best Ongoing Drag Event in the Best of Denver 2013, Drag Nation will go all out for this year's Wizard of Oz theme at Tracks. Hosted by the glamorous Nina Flowers, the not-to-miss drag show will feature Roxxxy Andrews, Alaska, Jinx Monsoon, Chad Michaels and more. Ruby at Emerald City, an adjoining women-centered party, will also be going on at Tracks. Check the Tracks website for more details.
HipChicksOut Second Friday Pride edition at The Living Room (Friday, June 14, 5 p.m., 21 and up, free) HipChicksOut is sponsoring an early-evening mixer that's a women-centered, all-inclusive gathering. Meet, greet, check out the Living room's wine selection and enjoy music from DJ Sinna-G. For more on the monthly party, visit the HipChicksOut site.
Show Me Your Pride at Eden (Friday, June 14, 21 and up, 8 p.m.) Eden will play off the "There's No Place Like Home" theme by celebrating the best women's-centered events in the city. Kicking off Eden's Pride festivities will be the Show Me Your Pride party, a peep show extravaganza featuring burlesque variety troupe Vanity Dollz and DJ DMX. For more information, visit the bar's website.
Saturday, June 15 Denver Dyke March at Blush & Blu (Saturday, June 15, 3 p.m., all ages, free) Starting with a rally at 3 p.m. at Blush & Blu, the Denver Dyke March will take off for Civic Center Park at 4 p.m., inviting "dykes, queers, lesbians, women-loving-women, gays, transpeople, bisexuals, genderqueers, allies, feminists and all other supporters" to join the inclusive march, now in its fifth year. More information is available on The Center's website.
Big Gay 5K at Civic Center Park (Saturday, June 15, 8 a.m., all ages, $40) At the heart of the PrideFest action, this race kicks off at Civic Center Park before the rest of the day begins. Get in a good walk or run and celebrate the weekend of family inclusion with a course that runs up 14th Avenue, through Cheesman Park and back to Civic Center. Registration the day of the race is $40 and begins at 8 a.m.; the race starts at 10 a.m. For more information, visit the Big Gay 5K's website.
Lollipop Guild at Tracks (Saturday, June 16, 18 and up, 9 p.m., $15) More wizardry will be happening at Tracks on Satuurday night, with several rooms of dancing. DJs and live aerialists will entertain the masses at the giant dance complex that has been transformed into its very own version of Oz. More information is available at the Tracks website.
Happy Birthday to Eden at Eden (Saturday, June 16, 2 p.m., free until 4 p.m., $5-$10 after The weekend continues at Eden with the two-year anniversary of the multi-level restaurant, bar, club and performance space. DJ JT opens the afternoon soiree, and DJ Desire takes over the evening shift. A late-night buffet runs from midnight to 4 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday for an additional $15, or $10 with an Eden or Tracks wristband. More information can be found at Eden's website. Continue reading for more events.
Pool Party at Tracks (Sunday, June 16, 11 a.m., 21 and up, $5) Closing down the weekend, Tracks will transform its patio into an oasis in the city, complete with an outdoor pool and sand and cabana boys. This 21-and-up party kicks off after the parade and is free for those who have a wristband from Saturday night's party at Tracks; it's $5 otherwise. For more on all of Tracks's parties, visit its website.
Monday, June 17 Gay Day at Elitch Gardens (Monday, June 17, 10 a.m. all ages, $31.99 presale) Gay Day is now an Elitch Gardens tradition: The amusement park will open up at 10 a.m. for everyone, with but a special emphasis on GLBTQIA families. Presale tickets are available at a discount; enter promo code PRIDE when purchasing. For more information or to buy tickets, visit the Elitch Gardens website.
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