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San Francisco’s Gay Pride Preview

June 6, 2013 3:10 PM

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(credit: David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

(credit: David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

sanfranprideparade San Franciscos Gay Pride Preview

(credit: David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

San Francisco Pride
Civic Center, San Francisco
Market and Polk Streets
(415) 864-0831

Price: A $5 minimum donation is requested of all attendees who are able to pay, and will be donated to local charities.
Dates: Saturday, June 29 – 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday, June 30 – 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

This month, San Francisco Pride will be held for the 43rd year. More than just a parade, this weekend event, held June 29-30, is the center of a month-long celebration of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender culture across the world and in the Bay Area. June has become Gay Pride month in many places across the world, including the United States. San Francisco will lead the celebration with parades and events for all orientations to enjoy.

prideparade1 San Franciscos Gay Pride Preview

(credit: David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

San Francisco has long been a center of gay culture and activism, first as a busy port city during the era of maritime trade and later as an embarkation point for military troops. Since its founding as a boomtown during the California Gold Rush, San Francisco was known as a “wide open town” that tolerated many, at the time, illegal and socially-sanctioned behaviors. San Francisco’s relative tolerance meant that many gay and lesbian people chose to settle in the city. After World War II, the beatnik movement centered in San Francisco. By the 1960s, the growing gay rights movement, spurred by discrimination and police harassment, found one of its centers in the Bay area. The first Pride march was held in San Francisco, and other major American cities in 1970, as a response to the one-year anniversary of the police raid on the Stonewall Inn in New York City. San Francisco Pride, in its various guises throughout the years, became a seminal experience for many GLBT people.

Related: Spots for Last Minute Pride Outfits

holdinghandspride San Franciscos Gay Pride Preview

(credit: David Paul Morris/Getty Images)

By the 1970s, San Francisco and neighborhoods like the Castro became a gay mecca. The AIDS crisis, and more recently the debate over marriage rights, has kept many members of the GLBT community focused on activism and awareness. This is illustrated by the theme of the 2012 San Francisco Pride: Global Awareness. Ugandan Bishop Christopher Senyonjo will be speaking during the event on the issues that face GLBT people in Uganda and throughout Africa.

But Pride is foremost a celebration of diversity, taking place June 29-30 in San Francisco’s Civic Center. Thousands of visitors will travel to the city in order to participate. A parade, held Sunday June 30 starting at 10:30 a.m., will feature a promenade of pride supporters along Market Street from Beale Street to Eighth Street. The weekend includes over 200 groups entered for the parade, exhibitors selling wares and nineteen stages for music and entertainment. The Main Stage features both world-famous singers and up-and-coming performers. The 2013 line-up includes Peaches& Herb, Gram Rabbit, and our own Liam Mayclem!

Get involved in what’s important to this city and attend the weekend’s activities!

Related: Our Five Favorite San Francisco Gay Bars

Check out CBS Local’s Guide to Celebrating SF Pride

Laura Tarwater-Scharp is a freelance writer, editor and historian. Originally from the Midwest, she has lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for over a decade. Her work can be found at

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