NYC Pride 2023

Exploring the city’s LGBTQ+ heritage

Since its days as New Amsterdam, New York City has been defined by a spirit of openness and creativity. June is Pride Month and a great time to delve into the city’s pivotal role in the fight for gay rights and recognition. 1969’s Stonewall Uprising took place in the West Village, the first LGBTQ+ museum started in SoHo, and the community rallied at the New York Stock Exchange during the AIDS epidemic. Iconic figures like Andy Warhol, James Baldwin, and Audre Lorde called the city home as well. The NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project works toward “making an invisible history visible”—visit for a comprehensive list of significant city locations.

When Is the 2023 Pride Parade?

pride parade nyc

Photo by Malcolm Lightbody on Unsplash.

The Pride Parade, officially known as the NYC Pride March, takes place on Sunday, June 25th. It begins at noon, stepping off from 25th Street and Fifth Avenue. It heads south down Fifth Avenue to 8th Street, where it heads west to cross Sixth Avenue. In the West Village, the march continues on Christopher Street to pass the Stonewall National Monument before heading north again on Seventh Avenue to pass the New York City AIDS Memorial. The march ends in Chelsea, at Seventh Avenue and 16th Street. The Grand Marshalls for the 2023 March are Billy Porter, Yasmin Benoit, AC Dumlao, Hope Giselle, and Randolfe “Randy” Wicker.

Actress, businesswoman, and transgender rights advocate Angelica Ross returns for a third year as co-host and featured performer of the broadcast special on ABC 7. That broadcast airs from noon to 3pm on Sunday.

Pride Special at Ellen’s Stardust Diner

rainbow cake ellen's

The show goes on at this popular Times Square spot for delicious food, drinks, and live performances. Ellen’s has been a staple in the Broadway community since 1987 and is known for its famous singing waitstaff, performing tunes from popular musicals. All June, a portion of the proceeds from Ellen’s rainbow cake, milkshake, and merchandise will go to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Diners will also be able to experience a variety of “Starduster” performances from iconic musicals like A Chorus Line, Rent, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Falsettos, Avenue Q, Kinky Boots, The Color Purple, and A Strange Loop.

1650 Broadway, 212-956-5151,

Second Annual Pride in Times Square Celebration

pride in times square

Image: Times Square Alliance.

The Times Square Alliance and Playbill have announced the lineup for the second annual PRIDE IN TIMES SQUARE celebration, which features free events centered around NYC Pride Weekend, June 23rd and 24th. Look for big-name stage and screen stars, Broadway/Off-Broadway productions, local Times Square business promotions, Pride Piano sessions, live DJ sets, a trans and ENBY Pride celebration, a Drag Pride celebration, and the return of last year’s Big Broadway Disco.

Special guests, concerts, and surprise performances take to the stage on Friday, June 23rd and Saturday, June 24th.

Times Square will “ignite the night” with THE BIG BROADWAY DISCO—a large-scale street party that invites revelers to dance through Times Square to classic and contemporary Broadway songs and performances, all with a disco flair. With the Playbill Pride Float as a focal point, expect DJ’s, performers, dancers, and fabulous costumes, Saturday, June 24th starting at 5pm.

Take photos with a one-of-a-kind piano and stay for piano sing-along performances and piano concerts throughout both days, led by top Broadway musicians and performers.

The Times Square Alliance will celebrate the best of the neighborhood's Pride discounts, deals, giveaways, and special menu items from local businesses all month long. Special offers will appear at from Times Square restaurants, shops, shows, and attractions that celebrate and support the most colorful month of the year. Plus, experience #SignsOfPride in Times Square with displays of Pride flags and rainbows on screens and billboards throughout the Crossroads of the World.

Pride on the Water

jewel yacht

Black music collective Deep Root Records is bringing together a host of NYC’s underground queer nightlife communities to celebrate Pride in a massive day-into-night doubleheader on Sunday, June 25th.

The first runs from 1-5pm and features a lineup curated by celebrated NYC selector Dada Cozmic. She’ll be inviting a special guest lineup of DJs to embark on a musical journey aboard the spacious, 2-floor Jewel Yacht, complete with stunning views of the Brooklyn Bridge, the Statue of Liberty, and the New York City skyline. Dada Cozmic will be joined by co-headliner and Body Hack resident Archangel, as well as Arrebato’s Undocubougie, Social Work’s Purp, and S’aint Panic. Get tickets here.

The second kicks off at 6pm and runs until 10pm, again on the Jewel Yacht for a sunset cruise. The lineup is packed full of house/techno talent. The mad scientist of playful acid house, Biianco, will take over the top deck while forward-thinking producer Valentina Moretti, who hails from Mexico, will make her New York debut on the club deck. Joining Biianco on the open-air top deck will be Bina, while E-mood and Muse(O)Fire. Get tickets here.

Celebrate Pride @ Bk Backyard Bar: Queen Garden with Whitney Day

bk backyard queen garden whitney day

Massive new Williamsburg sports and music venue Bk Backyard Bar celebrates Pride on Sunday, June 25th, from 2-10 PM at the Queer Garden with Whitney Day. The all-day Queer Garden event will be hosted by Netflix's hit show, 'the ultimatum: queer love' Mal & Lexi, kick-ass queer DJs (DJ dalí, DJ m.k., DJ recklezz & Whitney Day), food trucks, go-go dancers, giant games, and queerlebrities. Come celebrate and dance with queer cuties! Tickets start at $33.74. 

Family-Friendly Pride

On Sunday, June 25th from 1 to 4pm, Wythe Hotel, Williamsburg’s original boutique hotel, is creating an afternoon of free and family-friendly entertainment in celebration of diversity and self-expression. Activities will include:

  • Storytelling hour in partnership with Drag Story Hour NYC, where incredible drag performers bring to life stories that inspire acceptance and kindness in all of us
  • Live music from ShawTime Duo, a father-and-son ukelele group from Brooklyn known for their engaging and endearing stages
  • Face-painting onsite for children and adults alike to embrace their inner and outer vibrance
  • Ice cream, beverages and cocktails for the parents available to purchase, including the Supergay Cosmo, a special cocktail collaboration with Supergay Spirits benefitting LGBTQ+ advocacy organization The Center.

The event is free and open to the public, and tickets can be reserved through Eventbrite.

Exploring NYC's LGBTQ+ Heritage


Chelsea, the neighborhood west of Fifth Avenue and north of 14th Street to about 30th Street, has long been known for its stately brownstones, art gallery scene, and quaint, tree-lined streets. Along with Hell’s Kitchen, Chelsea also boasts the highest density of same-sex couples in the city. The neighborhood’s stretch of Eighth Avenue presents a prosperous line of gay-friendly businesses, with rainbow flags out all year round. For some fresh air and rare views, walk The High Line, a converted railway that cuts above the city streets.

Hell’s Kitchen

This Midtown West neighborhood is filled to the brim with dining and entertainment options, and home to many LGBTQ+ owned businesses and gay residents. Gay-friendly nightlife options include the Wild West-themed Flaming Saddles and the industrial-chic Industry Bar. The area is close to Broadway shows and features Restaurant Row, with great dinner spots like Jasmine’s Caribbean Cuisine.

The Village

Greenwich Village (or the West Village, as it’s also known) is one of the hearts of NYC’s LGBTQ+ culture. Along Christopher Street are hotspots like the cabaret bar The Duplex and Marie’s Crisis Cafe, “the world’s only acoustic sing-a-long showtunes piano bar.” Monster is a Sheridan Square stalwart with show tunes upstairs and a heavily Latino crowd jamming to the latest dance tracks downstairs. Called home by the local lesbian crowd (though a few boys are usually thrown in for good measure), the small, unpretentious bar Cubbyhole features a capricious décor that’s heavy on the fish. The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center (“The Center”) has its home on West 13th Street. This essential community organization hosts arts events and provides services like counseling and HIV resources. An adorable neighborhood full of historical row houses and cobblestone streets, the Village makes for a perfect, meandering walk in June (with fun photo ops on Gay Street).

NYC AIDS Memorial

nyc aids memorial west village

Mr. Nixter/Flickr.

The NYC AIDS Memorial in the West Village stands as a testament to the over 100,000 New Yorkers lost to AIDS and the continuing fight against this disease. St. Vincent’s hospital, formerly located on the park site, started the city’s first AIDS ward during the epidemic in 1984. The memorial and surrounding park were designed by Studio ai, and artist Jenny Holzer designed the engraving on the memorial pavement, inscribed with passages from Walt Whitman’s poem “Song of Myself.” There is programming at the site, with Saturday, June 10th seeing the multi-media presentation Peter Cramer & Jack Waters, Weavers of the Daisy Chain Gang Chorus: Ties That Bond.

200-218 W. 12th St.,

Stonewall Riots

segal gay liberation sculpture village

George Segal’s “Gay Liberation” sculpture in Christopher Park honors the gay rights movement and commemorates the 1969 uprising at the Stonewall Inn across the street. Image: Wally Gobetz/Flickr.

In 1969 at a West Village gay bar called the Stonewall Inn, patrons resisted a police raid. The subsequent six-day uprising, which spread from Stonewall to the triangular Christopher Park across the street, is considered the birth of the modern LGBTQ+ movement. Stonewall is an active bar today, and across the street from it is the Stonewall Inn State Historic Site, part of the urban oasis that is Christopher Park.

53 Christopher St., 212-488-2705,

Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay & Lesbian Art

The world’s first museum dedicated to LGBTQ+ art and artists, this institution grew out of a 1969 exhibit in the SoHo loft of Charles Leslie and Fritz Lohman. The museum preserves the history of queer art with an archive of over 30,000 works. On view now is Images on which to build, 1970s-1990s, looking at image cultures, and Coyote Park: I Love You Like Mirrors Do, exploring intimate entanglements.

26 Wooster St., 212-431-2609,

James Baldwin’s Residence

The writer James Baldwin (1942-1987), raised in Harlem, lived much of his adult life in France. Critical of America’s institutional racism, Baldwin became a powerful voice during the Civil Rights Movement. His second novel, Giovanni’s Room, frankly depicted gay and bisexual lifestyles during the 1950s. He owned this remodeled rowhouse on the Upper West Side and stayed there whenever he came to town.

137 W. 71st St.

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