It’s PRIDE in Indy: Events, Parades and Parties, Oh My!

Each Indy Pride Festival gets bigger and bigger. What started as a commemoration of the Stonewall Riots in June of 1969, the first moment in Civil Rights activism for the LGBT community, has since turned into a cultural phenomenon across the United States each Summer. All kinds of liberal minded Indianapolis communities turn out each year to celebrate the right to be yourself and highlight the need for true equality in our country. Indy Pride takes over the Circle City all week ending with a parade and Indianapolis festival in Indianapolis downtown Saturday, June 12th. No longer can a single day contain all the excitement of Circle City IN Pride. With many FREE Indianapolis events scheduled throughout the week, Circle City IN Pride offers affordable fun in the month of June.

Monday, June 7: Day of Service

The LGBT Pride movement began as a manifestation of civic duty, as the brave forerunners of the movement demonstrated in order to bring attention to the need for equality throughout all of society. Though members of the LGBT community still must fight for the total realization of this dream, they remain active to the community in many other ways as well, showing a social conscience that extends well beyond personal rights. Monday, June 7 is a Day of Service in the Circle City IN Pride.

Giving something back to the community ranks just as important as the fun and festivities that come later on during Circle City IN Pride. This year Pride is partnering with Keep Indianapolis Beautiful to overhaul a pocket park in the Cottage Home area. Together Pride and Keep Indianapolis Beautiful will renovate and improve a neighborhood’s vacant green space, which contains five lots in the center of the Cottage Home area.

Though the project is an ongoing process, with multiple weeks of work necessary, Monday, June 7 volunteers will rebuild a park shelter out of re-used and recycled materials (including the fabric of the RCA Dome, which has appeared throughout Indianapolis since its destruction). In addition, June 7 volunteers will work on creating a gathering and performing space, a rain garden, a wildflower garden to support a bee hive, a children’s play and reading area, trees and more. For more information visit the Circle City IN Pride website (listed below).

Tuesday, June 8: Pride of Indy Band and Jazz Band Concert

The Pride of Indy Band has come to be a favorite Indianapolis music group for many. Each June the Pride of Indy Band marches in the Pride Parade and performs at the festival on Military Park. This year they have been given an evening all their own as they invite Indianapolis people to the Mass Ave Firemen’s Memorial for an outdoor concert at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, June 8. Bring a lawn chair and a picnic to enjoy an evening of great music. For more information visit their website.

Head across the street to Forty Five Degrees, a new Indianapolis bar and Indianapolis nightlife hot spot, for a concert after party. Mingle and meet the band!

Wednesday, June 9: How to be Politically Active in 2010

Another big part of Pride is passing on the LGBT heritage that has become a cornerstone of the current LGBT Rights Movement. Pride offers a chance for young people to learn about the sacrifices of their predecessors as they become politically active for a new generation. The Academy Award winning film Milk shared the story of Harvey Milk, the first gay man ever to be elected to public office. His contributions to the movement in San Francisco are a legendary part of the LGBT community’s history of social activism.

Prior to the version starring Sean Penn, another Oscar winning film chronicled The Times of Harvey Milk in documentary style. The Phoenix Theatre hosts a special viewing of this enlightening documentary Wednesday, June 9th at 7:00 pm. A post film discussion will be hosted by Indiana Equality, featuring a panel of Indiana Stonewall Democrats, Log Cabin Republicans, Libertarian Party and Green Party members. This lively discussion will delve deep into all angles of the movement for equality and what it means to be politically active in 2010. This Indianapolis art event is co sponsored by Step Up, Inc. and the Indianapolis LGBT Film Festival.

Thursday, June 10: Ladies Night

Famed Indianapolis bar, Greg’s (on Illinois Street), hosts Ladies Night for this year’s Circle City IN Pride as they present “Bag Ladies 3D: 3 Decades of Divas! at 9:00 pm. For thirty plus years, the Bad Ladies have been a driving force of the effort to raise funds and awareness for HIV/AIDS in Indianapolis. The fact that they have been doing their honorable work for three decades is an amazing achievement for any HIV/AIDS organization in the United States. The fact that these fabulous ladies are Hoosiers only adds to our pride in them! Join the Bag Ladies and celebrate their awesome success and incredible contributions to Indianapolis history at Ladies Night this Thursday at Greg’s in Indianapolis downtown.

At 7:00 pm on Thursday, June 10, Talbott Street celebrates Girl Pride ’10 with a host of fun femme bands. With a minimum $5.00 cover, Talbott Street offers Indianapolis bands including Cari Ray, Neon Love Life, Upshot and Holly Petree. Plus, DJs, VIP Lounge Cocktail Hour with Hor Dourves and a Photo Booth. A VIP pass is only $10.00.

Friday, June 11: Indiana Youth Group, A Night to Share

Friday, June 11 marks the annual fundraiser for the Indiana Youth Group, a community based support group for young people age twelve to twenty one who self identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or questioning and their allied friends. Held at the Indiana War Memorial at 8:00 pm, this Indianapolis nonprofit organization event features live entertainment, a silent auction, food by Hoaglin Fine Catering and a cash bar.

The Indiana Youth Group activity center offers a supportive environment that allows youth to build self confidence, explore individualism, and develop friends in a community that values fairness, acceptance, respect for diversity and equality. Since 1987, the Indiana Youth Group has been a positive force impacting thousands of LGBT youth.

Admission to the event is $40.00. VIP admission is $60.00 and includes free signature drinks. This is a twenty one and up event.

Saturday, June 12: Circle City IN Pride Parade and Festival

Saturday, June 12 is the big day, when Indianapolis downtown is transformed into a gigantic party by some of Indiana’s most colorful residents. The Pride Parade starts at 10:00 am. Its annual route down the Indianapolis cultural district, Mass Ave, features floats, bands, motorcycle brigades, drag queens, antique cars and truck, several walking groups and more! What started as a fifteen minute sojourn in 2005 has since grown to last about 90 minutes and includes over 100 unites.

Because the Circle City IN Pride Festival has a new venue at Military Park, the Parade has a new route. Though it still kicks off at College and Mass Ave, it will end at Military Park. The Circle City IN Pride Festival begins at 11:00 am, as soon as the Parade reaches its destination. With more than 150 vendors from national and local organizations and Indianapolis businesses, this year’s festival is bigger than ever. Plus live entertainment on a huge stage that includes performances from Taylor Dayne and Blake Lewis.

This FREE Indianapolis event is open to all! Bring family and friends, gay or straight. All are welcome!

Circle City IN Pride

The week is packed full of fun Pride events across the Circle City. And there are even more. For a list of additional Pride related events visit Circle City IN Pride’s official website (listed below).

After the festival closes down Saturday evening, the fun continues on at any number of Indianapolis restaurants and Indianapolis bars. Whether you head to Talbott Street, Greg’s, the Metro or Forty Five Degrees, Indianapolis people will still be celebrating their Pride.

Stay tuned to Indianapolis News, Events and Information on Fun City for all the latest on fun things to do in Indianapolis. We cover Indianapolis attractions to Indianapolis sports and everything in between. Get out in Indy and find some fun! Make the Circle City your playground!

Circle City IN Pride
Now through Saturday, June 12

Pride Parade and Festival
Military Park
Saturday, June 12

Circle City IN Pride’s website