2014 Pride preview

A scene from the 2012 Pride parade. Credit:

The 42nd Annual Twin Cities Pride Festival is coming up on June 28& 29. To get in the loop, here is a preview of upcoming events. 


At 7 p.m. on FRIDAY, JUNE 20, tip off Pride week at the Target Center and watch the 2013 WNBA Champions of the Minnesota Lynx play the Washington Mystics. After the game there is an opportunity to meet some of the players. Tickets are $35 and can be purchased at http://www.tempotickets.com/tempotickets/site/pages/event.php?e=3528&c=312.


From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on SUNDAY, JUNE 22, there is a free Pride Family Picnic at Midway Stadium, 1771 Energy Park Dr. in St. Paul. After the picnic, there is an option to watch the St. Paul Saints play the Rockland Boulders at 1:05 p.m. in block RF1.  Tickets are $9 and can be purchased at www.saintsgroups.com with the password “tcpride.” Picnic attendees are not required to go to the game.


At 8 p.m. on THURSDAY, JUNE 26, comedian Margaret Cho will perform stand-up at Orchestra Hall at 1111 Nicollet Mall to officially open the four-day Twin Cities Pride Celebration weekend. Nothing is off limits for Cho, whose comedy is known for being politically charged and socially aware. Ticket prices range from $39.50 to $153.50 and can be purchased at the Orchestra Hall Box Office, Minnesota Orchestra Administrative Offices or online at http://www.minnesotaorchestra.org/buy/tickets/browse-calendar/eventdetail/280/-/twin-cities-pride-presents-margaret-cho#.U6HTokZ3xQd.

Premium seating includes a reception with an open bar from 5:30 to 8 p.m. as well as a 2014 Pride pin, and free admission for one person to the 2014 Pride in Concert and Pride Festival Beer Gardens. 


From 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. on FRIDAY, JUNE 27, the Beer Dabbler returns to the Pride Festival for the third year in a row in Loring Park. Attendees will be able to sample food and drinks from 25 local breweries and 25 local food trucks or carts. Each brewery and food truck or cart will be paired together and create a food option and craft beer sample for $3 per pairing. Attendees will also enjoy live music, a Silent Disco and games and activities. General admission tickets are $48 and include unlimited beer samples. Designated Driver tickets are $10. All ticket holders must be 21 or older on the day of the event. Tickets can be purchased at http://thebeerdabbler.com/buy-tickets/


The Pride Festival kicks off at 10 a.m. on SATURDAY, JUNE 28 at Loring Park, 1382 Willow St. Admission is free, but an ID check and Beer Garden wristband costs $5. The festival will have over 400 exhibitors and 40 food and beverage booths and expected attendance is over 300,000.

Throughout the festival over 80 local artists will be performing on four stages, and Pride in Concert will be held at 5 p.m. on the Loring Stage. Pride in Concert will feature four headliners: pop star Betty Who, country singer Steve Grand, Motown/Disco/R&B singer Thelma Houston and dance & R&B singer Thea Austin. Daytime myTalk 107.1 co-host Bradley Traynor is the emcee for the event. At the end of the night, DJ Rich B will perform with fireworks set to his music.

This event is only for guests 18 and older. General admission tickets are $10 and VIP Lounge tickets are $75. VIP Lounge tickets include complimentary snacks and drinks in a tent next to the stage and a separate entrance to the concert. VIP ticket holders may upgrade to a meet and greet with an artist for $125. The VIP Lounge is for guests 21 and older and includes UBER car service. Tickets are available for purchase at http://www.tempotickets.com/tempotickets/site/pages/event.php?e=3408&c=312.


The Festival continues again from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on SUNDAY, JUNE 29 in Loring Park with the food, music and exhibits, but Sunday is also the day of the Rainbow Run 5K and the Ashley Rukes GLBT Pride Parade.

The Rainbow Run 5K starts at 9:30 a.m. and starts at Boom Island at 724 Sibley St. NE. The route will take runners from Boom Island along Hennepin Avenue while spectators are preparing for the Ashley Rukes GLBT Pride Parade and ends near Loring Park. To see the route, visit http://www.usatf.org/routes/view.asp?rID=540568.

Participants must maintain a minimum 16-minute mile to participate and the route must be clear by 10:30 a.m. for the parade.

From now until June 26, race fees are $35. On race day, the fee is $40. Registration opens at 8:30 a.m. at the Boom Island Park Pavilion. To register, visit http://www.active.com/mineapolis-mn/running/distance-running-races/twin-cities-pride-rainbow-run-2014.

Following the Rainbow Run 5K is the Ashley Rukes GLBT Pride Parade at 11 a.m. The route starts at 3rd and Hennepin and ends at Spruce and Hennepin. There are over 120 units of supporters that make up the parade. Grandstand seats are sold out. SEVEN Sushi and UltraLounge is offering an air-conditioned space for $10. For $25, the All You Can Eat special is open for guests at the 7th Annual Bitch ‘n Brunch. For tickets, visit http://www.eventbrite.com/e/7th-annual-bitch-n-brunch-tickets-5356184492.

Finally, all-day Saturday and Sunday, guests have the option to get married at pride for $400. This package includes a location next to the gardens and the lake, one-hour access to a white tent with 50 white chairs and a riser for a wedding party, a changing room tent, PA system for music or a microphone for a musician, an officiant, an on-site coordinator, one-hour rehearsal time on Thursday night, One reserved parking spot for 2.5 hours and a Car2Go getaway car decorated by wedding guests.

For more information and to participate, contact Julie Lyford at [email protected]