Wigs, glitter, rainbows and activism are upon us. The first Wynwood Pride is coming.
While South Florida queer strongholds Miami Beach and Wilton Manors have held pride events in April and June, respectively, for decades, Wynwood is finally hosting a pride festival of its own. The Wynwood Business Improvement District and events group SWARM Events announced the pride celebration, set to take place at Wynwood Marketplace, last month.
The full line-up of musicians and drag artists that will perform during the weekend has been released. The acts include Brazilian drag singer Pabllo Vittar, “Rupaul’s Drag Race” star AJA, Cuban lesbian salsa icon Albita and Miss Toto, the formerly Miami-based drag queen known for her muscles and Big Mouth-inspired lip sync performances.
Anna Albelo, the Wynwood Pride executive director and co-founder, said the festival, which is lovingly nicknamed “Queerchella,” is focused on promoting LGBTQ talent and local community service organizations in the same location.
Wynwood’s origins in street art and expression makes it the perfect backdrop for a pride celebration that combines community and art, Albelo said.
“There’s still a lot of space in Wynwood to create,” she said.
Miami hasn’t had a pride celebration in June (which is LGBTQ Pride Month) since 1996 because it’s too hot and the chance of rain is too high, Albelo said. (The festival will be held under a tent so the event goes on rain or shine.) She said holding the festival in June is politically significant and puts Miami on the world’s radar for pride celebrations.
“[Pride is] such a vital necessity,” Albelo said. “Once a year, you’re going to be able to see and meet and discover thousands of people and the message, ‘You are not alone.’”
What’s poppin’ at the festival?
Festival-goers can RSVP online to get a free drink while supplies last. The website also offers a three-day “VIP Front Row” for access to the best view of performances, a private bar and air-conditioned restrooms for $95 (before tax.)
The Wynwood Pride app is available for iPhone and Android and will include the festival’s full schedule. The festival will feature:
- live concerts
- drag performances
- A “Family Zone” with Drag Queen Story hour, face-painting and games
- A vogue dance competition
- Drag brunch
- Film showcases
- Art and fashion installations
- Panel discussions on LGBTQ issues
Who’s going to be there?
The line-up of local, national and international singers, rappers and drag artists includes:
- Pabllo Vittar
- Ivy Queen
- Dorian Electra
- Carmen Carrera
- Miss Toto
- Tama Gucci
- Queef Latina
Is it all fun and games?
For many, Pride Month is a chance to party. For others, it’s a time to protest. Albelo said the Wynwood festival was organized with entertainment, political activism and community service in mind.
“Miami’s really, really on the map for a new generation of 21st-century activism,” she said.
Each year, the festival will promote three themes that are relevant to the LGBTQ community and partner with nonprofit organizations that will be beneficiaries of the proceeds, Albelo said. This year, the festival is highlighting organizations that work with the themes of youth, health and justice.
The beneficiaries are Pridelines, a South Florida LGBTQ youth service group; the Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, a queer activist and advocacy foundation; and Survivor’s Pathways, an advocacy organization for domestic and sexual violence survivors with the nation’s largest program servicing Latinx transgender women.
The festival is offering 20 local nonprofits free space to set up at a “Community Village” to provide services like HIV testing, counseling information and opportunities for wardrobe and monetary donations.
What if I get hungry?
The festival will host local food trucks and vendors. A full list of the food trucks will be available closer to the festival date, but for now, Milly’s Empanada Factory is confirmed to be there.
What else can I do during Pride Month?
- June 6th: Drink It Forward at Veza Sur
- June 8th: Wynwood Art Walk at Wynwood Marketplace
- June 13th: Double Stubble drag show at Gramps
- June 19th: Bingo with Karla Croqueta at Gramps
IF YOU GO:
What: Wynwood Pride
When: 4 p.m. to 3 a.m. June 21; noon to 3 a.m. June 22; noon to 10 p.m. June 23
Where: Wynwood Marketplace, 2250 NW 2nd Ave.
Cost: Free, $95 VIP