The 7th annual Kentuckiana Pride Festival got underway last night with the longest parade in the event’s history and record crowds. LGBT supporters aligned the streets as the parade rolled through spotlighting everything from the Kentucky Pride Foundation itself to dykes on bikes, drag queens and marchers decked in the wildest rainbow garb that can be worn. The event themed “Our Footprints are Everywhere,” being held in downtown Louisville along the Belvedere is a weekend long festival highlighting support for gays and their families.
Stage events included wacky drag performances and a highlighted performance by Cazwell, an American rapper/DJ spinning mashups that included gay favorites, Madonna, Lady Gaga and Rihanna. Cazwell decked in a rainbow jumper outfit and a gigantic Mr. T gold chain had the crowd on their feet as they gathered around the stage head bobbing to the pumping Chicago-house club beats cranking through the air. Backstage, even the Kentuckiana Pride volunteers were having the time of their life as Cazwell finally addressed the crowd by taking the microphone to the front of the stage, stripping down to reveal a one-piece 80s jumper in front of the rainbow lights. Overall, the Friday night Kentuckiana Pride festival’s kick off was a success, crowd chants filled the air, old friends reunited and new ones were met.
Saturday's festival, which includes a 5-dollar admission charge, plays host to live performances by Center Stage, premiering a special showcase of the upcoming musical RENT, as well as local Louisville favorites, The Blue Umbrellas and The Ladybirds. Eric Himan, The Cliks, LaBoy LaFemme, Xelle and Inaya Day all join the festival lineup with live performances.
- No ID, no alcohol. No exceptions.
- Persons, bags, coolers and other containers are subject to search.
- No weapons, drugs, outside alcohol or open containers are permitted.
- Pets are welcome at the parade, but not the festival.
- If you lose your wristband, you’ll need to purchase admission again.
All proceeds benefit the Kentuckiana Pride Foundation. A full lineup of festival events can be found at www.kypride.com. Children are welcome to attend.
photos courtesy Stef Perri