LGBTQ Issues Take Center Stage During San Diego Pride Week

The July 8-16 slate of events is packed with rainbow-colored activities likely to attract more than 300,000 participants
A smiling participant at the 2022 San Diego Pride Parade. (Photo by Sal Giametta)

Around the country and here in California, June is Pride Month. Hang on, though. Later in the calendar, but definitely not diminished in participation or spirit, LGBTQ focus and festivities take the spotlight during the July 8-16 San Diego Pride Week.

There’s a lot crammed into the local calendar. A massive Hillcrest parade and a two-day festival are planned at the end of the week, along with dozens of other scheduled events, such as pool parties, comedy shows and a 5K run.

Nationally, it’s been a busier than usual year for LGBTQ-related legislative issues. 

“Today, we find ourselves grappling with the Supreme Court’s decision that, albeit narrowly, has undercut long standing non-discrimination laws, granting a business the right to refuse service to LGBTQ people,” says San Diego Pride executive director Fernando Z. López. “It is alarming that a pathway to legal discrimination against our community has been established, even if it is currently confined to ‘customized, expressive’ services.”

That Supreme Court ruling, along with 14 states aiming to ban drag shows in public, and Tennessee lawmakers looking to restrict healthcare for transgender children, will be active discussion topics all week. 

The 2022 Pride Parade. (Photo by Sal Giametta)

Here are details for a few of the big-ticket activities on tap for San Diego Pride 2023:

The Parade.   

Local organizers say the annual San Diego Pride Parade will attract 300,000 people and is the largest single-day civic event in the region and among the largest Pride parades in the United States.

The Saturday, July 15 march starts at 10 a.m. The 1.5-mile parade of rainbows begins at the Hillcrest Pride Flag at University Avenue and Normal Street. The route turns south on Sixth Avenue, turns left on Balboa Drive and ends at Quince Drive.   

The Festival.

A two-day (July 15-16) Pride Festival caps the week of activities. The festival takes place at Marston Point and Balboa Park (Sixth Avenue and Laurel Street).

The fun includes entertainment, interactive exhibits and cultural presentations. The lineup of nearly 100 performers and bands includes Princess Nokia, Saucy Santana, David Archuleta and Pussy Riot.

The festival is open on Saturday, July 15 from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday, July 16 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Get ticket information here

Spirit of Stonewall Rally.

The rally dates back to 1975 and annually recognizes leaders working to preserve gains and meet challenges facing the LGBTQ community.

A half dozen speakers (including Jai Rodriquez from Queer Eye For The Straight Guy) will honor a slate of awardees. One honoree is Christilynne Lili Wrene Wood, a local advocate who weathered the national news spotlight after a wrongfully reported incident at the Santee YMCA.

The rally takes place Friday, July 14 from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Hillcrest Pride Flag.

For more information on all related events, go to SD PrideSDSun


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