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June, 2015

At Pride, heaven is a place in Cleveland

Pride hits the North Coast - and the rest of Ohio, too

Cleveland--The 27th annual Cleveland Pride Parade and Festival will once again be in Voinovich Park on June 27, and just to show that they’re mad about you, organizers’ lips are far from sealed when it comes to the identity of the headliner for the festival.

In fact, I get weak thinking about what a vacation that day will be.

Oh, all right, enough with the thinly-veiled song titles. This year’s Cleveland Pride headliner is Belinda Carlisle, former lead singer of the Go-Gos who hit the charts again solo with hit after hit in the 1980s.

A prominent member and supporter of P-FLAG, Carlisle’s son is James Duke Mason, an openly gay political activist, community advocate and writer.

Of course, Carlisle is far from the only entertainer who will be present; with multiple stages, the day will be filled with drag stylists, singers, dancers and more!

This year’s parade begins at Superior and West 3rd Street, heading north to Lakeside Avenue, then heads east past City Hall to East 9th Street before heading north to Voinovich Park, behind the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Cleveland Pride’s current incarnation began in 1989 as a small street festival in front of the old location of the Cleveland LGBT Center on West 29th street. In its second year at that location, they introduced the parade.

After five years at the old Center, the festival moved to Public Square for two years in 1994 and 1995, before finding a new home in Voinovich Park, which houses the festival to this day.

The same day, 250 miles to the southwest, Cincinnati Pride will take over Sawyer Point, also with two stages of entertainment, featuring Australian pop singer Betty Who and Chicago singer-songwriter Steve Grand as the headliners, along with local talent, drag performers and more.

The Cincinnati Pride Parade lines up on West 7th Street at Central Avenue, then heads east to Vine Street, where it turns south. It then takes Freedom Way to Main Street before following the Ohio River Trail to Sawyer Point.

A week before Cleveland and Cincinnati rock their parties, Columbus urges you to “Be the Change” at Stonewall Columbus’ 2015 Pride Parade and Festival.

Columbus’ festival in Goodale Park starts on Friday, June 19th at 5 pm, with two stages packed with entertainers.

The following day, the Columbus Pride Parade steps off at 11 am from South Front and West Broad Streets; line-up begins at 9 am.

Keeping with the “Be the Change” theme, the grand marshal of Columbus Pride will be Jim Obergefell, whose lawsuit against the state of Ohio may result in the Supreme Court legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide.

One week before Columbus Pride, Ohio will see the dawn of a new Pride festival, this one is a smaller city--the inaugural Springfield Pride.

Starting at no one in Springfield City Hall Plaza, the afternoon will see performances by the Columbus Gay Men’s Chorus, the Dayton Gay Men’s Chorus, TC Schreier and Karen Adkins of Springfield’s Got Talent, and host Amanda Sue, Miss Gay Cincinnati 2015.

Keep in mind, though, that the end of June is not the end of Pride in Ohio. Toledo Pride returns to Promenade Park the weekend of August 28 to 30, with Kiss ’n’ Drag on Friday followed by two days of festivals.

For more information about Springfield Pride, go to www.equality-springfield.org. Columbus Pride information is available at www.columbuspride.org. For a full listing of events in Cincinnati, head to www.cincinnatipride.org, and for Cleveland’s full line-up, go to www.clevelandpride.org.

 

 

 

 

 

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