This October, Las Vegas celebrates its 40th year of Pride. The city not only offers everything an adult could want, there’s the freedom to enjoy it in excess, within reason. They don’t say, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” for nothing.
If you’re a member of the LGBT+ community or an ally, here’s how Las Vegas is ringing in the big 4-0.
Why Is Las Vegas Pride So Late?
Most Pride celebrations take place in June, but Las Vegas dances to its own beat.
In 2011, officials moved the Pride festivities to October primarily for safety reasons. Nevada summers can be brutal, with temperatures reaching and exceeding 100 degrees. Cooler temperatures make Pride more enjoyable and accessible to all.
That said, the city waits until October to get the party going. Pride events and parties have already been going on for months.
What Can You Expect?
The Pride night parade is on October 6, and the festival follows on October 7.
The Night Parade starts at 6 p.m. and concludes at 10 p.m. Enjoy live entertainment on the main stage at 4th Street and Bridger Avenue, as well as vendors, food trucks, and more. The march starting at 7 p.m. is completely free to attend.
The Pride Festival is an all-day affair at Craig Ranch Regional Park. If possible, buy the VIP tickets so you can enjoy the best views of the stage, as well as cocktails and food.
For kinksters, there’s a private section of the festival where adults can watch demos, pole dancing performances, and engage in non-sexual play. If you do this, be aware of the universal safe word, which is “red.”
Dance, Mingle, and Swim
Carve out time for the nightclubs of the Fruitloop district, which is just a hop, skip, and jump from The Strip. LGBT+ people are embraced at Quadz, FreeZone, and Piranha Nightclub. Aside from offering a safe space to dance, drink, and socialize, Piranha hosts drag shows. You may recognize some of the performers from RuPaul’s Drag Race.
Another LGBT+ event is the Elevate Pool Party on Saturdays at SAHARA Las Vegas. This is a ticketed party, and half of the proceeds support Pride and the gay community. If handsome, shirtless men sound appetizing, get tickets to Magic Mike Live. This is also at SAHARA Las Vegas.
Chow Down and Raise a Toast to Pride
Foodies, if you haven’t yet had the pleasure to dine in Las Vegas, prepare yourselves for a ride. This city really has just about every cuisine there is, and at different price points, too. If you’re staying in one of the luxury resorts like The Venetian or Bellagio, there are plenty of restaurants to keep you sated.
Speaking of The Venetian, check out the newly-opened Juliet Cocktail Room. The Queen’s Garden is one of the cocktails, and it’s almost too beautiful to drink.