14 Ways to Celebrate Pride Month in Dallas-Fort Worth
From the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade, to the return of the festivals in Fair Park, we've got you covered with LGBTQ+ fun.
The Stonewall riots in New York City changed the course of history for the LGBTQIA+ community, not only in the United States but worldwide. The events of that fateful June 28 evening in 1969 brought to the forefront a conversation about equality for everyone, regardless of gender identity or sexual orientation. Three months later, organizers in Dallas presented the city’s first-ever Pride parade, a politically charged event that was also a celebration of personal liberty and freedom. The second Dallas Pride parade wouldn’t happen again until 1980 and by 1982 it was taken over by the Dallas Tavern Guild, a new organization of LGBTQIA+ bars and venues, that fueled the parade’s growth into a major annual event.
In 1983, the parade moved from June (the traditional Pride Month) to September and was renamed the Texas Freedom Parade after a judge ruled against the Texas sodomy law. Though the legal victory was short-lived (the law went back on the books until 2003), a spirit of defiance, perseverance, and unity kept the parade growing strong, attracting tens of thousands of people each fall. In 1991, the event’s name was modified to become the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade, honoring the Dallas Tavern Guild’s executive director who was responsible for much of its success.
The September timeframe proved popular as an annual celebration in Dallas’ Oak Lawn entertainment district—AKA the gayborhood—until the final float made its way down Cedar Springs Road in 2018. The next year, Dallas Pride took over Fair Park, home of the State Fair of Texas, for a full weekend of entertainment and programming with more than enough room to grow into one of the biggest LGBTQIA+ celebrations anywhere.
After a two-year COVID-era hiatus, Dallas Pride returns to Fair Park this June for everyone in the LGBTQIA+ community. We’ve gathered a list of 14 events to celebrate Pride in June, but if you’re still craving more, the calendar on the Dallas Pride website has even more ways to celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community in North Texas.
Thursday, June 2
Dallas Comedy Club presents Queer Factor, a comedy extravaganza featuring LGBTQ-identifying comedians presenting standup, improv, and sketches hosted by Stefan G. After the show, you have the chance to jump onstage yourself with a free Improv Jam that, who knows, could lead to your very own comedy career.
Friday, June 3
1980s singing sensation Tiffany (“I Think We’re Alone Now”) and disco diva Martha Wash of The Weather Girls (“It’s Raining Men”) headline the 15th-anniversary MetroBall benefiting the Greg Dolgener Memorial AIDS Fund. It all takes place on the dance floor at Station 4 (S4) on Cedar Springs Friday, June 3.
Saturday, June 4 & Sunday, June 5
The centerpiece of Dallas Pride celebrations are the events that take place at Fair Park. On Saturday, June 4, the Dallas Pride Miller Lite Music Festival, Dallas Teen Pride, and The Live Out Proud Show featuring a roster of local drag talent, including internationally recognized RuPaul’s Drag Race superstar Shangela, are the highlight of the day’s programming. Then on Sunday, June 5, the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade marches through Fair Park.
Saturday, June 4
The Women’s Chorus of Dallas and local drag legend Raquel Blake take over the Sammons Center for the Arts for the DIVAS Cabaret Fundraiser, an evening of pop music hits from solo artists, small groups, and the entire women’s chorus. There will be a silent auction, plus an included dessert bar, beer, wine, and non-alcoholic drinks.
Thursday, June 9 - Saturday, June 11
The first-ever Colour Me Queer Play Festival debuts thanks to the work of Blaque Artists Collective, Pride Owl Productions, and GRIOT Productions. The showcase of seven short plays portraying a variety of LGBTQIA+ experiences takes place at the Urban Arts Center in Oak Cliff, with an emphasis on diversity among directors, actors, and crew to pull from the gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, non-binary, and ally communities across North Texas.
Saturday, June 18
If you haven’t seen Sister Helen Holy, repent now. The hilariously pious drag persona of comedian Paul J. Williams leads an ensemble of comics in Sister Helen Holy's Secular Showcase: A Night of Comedy. Proceeds benefit Legacy Cares, a nonprofit supporting people living with HIV/AIDS.
Road trip to another Texas city for Pride Month festivities
Various dates in June
Celebrating Pride in other cities makes for a great excuse for a quick weekend vacation that’s a quick drive (or flight) from Dallas Love Field or DFW International Airport. Among the celebrations happening throughout June in the Lone Star State: the first-ever River Walk Pride Parade in San Antonio, a small-town celebration in nearby Longview, a festival and nighttime parade in Houston, a disco-fueled Sun City Pride in El Paso, and Pride with an ocean view at the celebration in Corpus Christi.
Saturday, June 18
Make like you’re in the latest season of Bridgerton for DIFFADallas’ outdoor fashion event at Tuttle Creek Park, Picnic: Promenade in the Park. General admission includes a picnic meal and access to an open bar, while VIP access gets you a shaded tent with cooling fans and its own VIP lounge. Bring your own blanket and decorate your area if you wish, but definitely make sure to dress in summer chic (or whatever gets you through the heat of the day).
Saturday, June 18
This month’s Gaybingo theme is “Glowing with Pride” and it promises to be the most festive, rainbow-colored soirée of the year. Your drag hosts lead you through several games of bingo (included in the price of admission) and you could win big cash prizes—if you mark all the right spots on your card, of course. Proceeds benefit the programs and services of Resource Center.
Saturday, June 18
Make your way around Cedar Springs for the Pride Crawl, which includes drink specials and freebies at several top spots. Meet at Roy G’s then hop from bar to bar, including Alexandre’s, Cedar Springs Tap House, JR’s Bar & Grill, Sue Ellen’s, Mr. Misster Dallas, Round-Up Saloon, Station 4, and The Mining Company (TMC). The official afterparty takes place at Mr. Misster and a portion of proceeds from the multi-hour event benefit The Trevor Project.
Sunday, June 19
Philanthropic drag queen Marsha Dimes presents her monthly fundraising drag brunches (noon and 2 pm) at Cedar Springs Tap House with several of her drag diva sisters performing for tips. Instead of keeping the cash for themselves, all proceeds from the price of admission and gratuities go to the Coalition for Aging LGBT.
Thursday, June 16 - Sunday, June 19
Dallas Southern Pride is the official annual gathering of the Black LGBTQIA+ community The weekend events include a festival, pool party, the Emancipation Ball, and concerts starring Yo Gotti, The City Girls, Moneybagg Yo, Saucy Santana, and local performers Yella Beezy and Erica Banks.
Saturday, June 25
Later in June, North Texans can celebrate in Fort Worth with Trinity Pride Fest, a day-long festival at Magnolia Green Park near downtown. The pet-friendly party will host food trucks, an artisan’s market, and live music from local queer entertainers.
Saturday, June 25
Resource Center celebrates Pride with its first-ever community block party at the organization’s headquarters on Cedar Springs Road. Honor and celebrate the LGBTQ community through interactive exhibits, carnival games, live entertainment, and food trucks for a unifying afternoon of positivity.