Best gay events for Pride week 2013
With this year's Northalsted Pride Fest moving up to this weekend, a week ahead of the Pride Parade, there's no reason not to extend the LGBTQ festivities throughout the week. Here are some recommended events to make your whole week prideful.
Chicago Pride Fest Unlike years past, Pride Fest makes the rainbow connection the weekend before the Pride Parade hits the street on June 30. Today's performance highlights on the north stage include "Hey whatever happened to" Blu Cantrell at 6:30pm, young electropop vocalist Dev at 9pm and reality-TV-star-most-likely-to-be-mistaken-for-a-drag-queen-this-weekend Aubrey O'Day at 2pm. Halsted St between Addison St and Grace St. 11am–10pm. $8.
Same Sex, Different Gays: Musical Tales of Relationships This musical-sketch nod to queer relationships aims to leave your heart (and other body parts) throbbing. pH Comedy Theater. 9:30pm. $15, students $10.
Queerer Park presents: Summermoon The masterminds behind Queerer Park have been throwing killer (and queerer) dance parties since 2009. Their latest throwdown benefits the Chicago Dyke March, with DJs Barbara Butch, Black Gold and Big Business laying down bouncing beats alongside the requisite Glitter Guts photo booth. Beauty Bar. 10pm. $3 after 11pm.
Chicago Pride Fest Today's entertainment highlights on the north stage include ’90s R&B diva Deborah Cox at 2:30pm, ’90s house diva Ultra Naté at 4pm and ’90s club diva Inaya Day at 5pm. Halsted St between Addison St and Grace St. 11am–10pm. $8.
Reincarnate Check out newly-opened Progress Bar's new Sunday day party—which for its inaugural Pride Fest weekend outing will go well into the night. DJs today include Kid Color, PHNM, Mother Hubbard, Marco Morales, All the Way Kay and Travas Machel. Progress Bar. 3pm–2am. Free.
The Pride Alexi Kaye Campbell's 2008 drama flips between the ’50s and the aughties as it traces the evolution of British gay life via a pair of parallel love triangles. Bonnie Metzgar stages the Chicago premiere as her final act as About Face Theatre's outgoing artistic director. Read our four-star review. Victory Gardens Biograph Theater. 5pm. $30, students $15.
OUTspoken: A Call for Gay Voices Erasing the Distance, a performance organization dedicated to spotlighting and destigmatizing mental health issues, presents a public performance of three stories as part of the development of a full show about mental health issues in the LGBTQ community. Following the performances, a facilitator will guide audience members in group activities to share their own stories. Center on Halsted. 6pm. Pay what you can.
Chigaygo! The Laugh Factory slates a new weekly night of queer and queer-friendly comics, produced and hosted by Scott Duff. Tonight's lineup includes Ever Mainard, Joel Kim Booster and Martin Morrow. Proceeds benefit the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance. Laugh Factory. 8pm. $17–$27.
Queer Comedy at Zanies Laugh it up with a Pride week LGBT stand-up lineup that actually includes comics who are L, G, B and T (plus some straight friends). Trans comedian Carey Callahan headlines, with Kellye Howard, Sapna Kumar, Joel Kim Booster, Michelle Rene Thompson and host Adam Guerino. Zanies. 8:30pm. Advance $10, door $15.
Windy City Gay Idol Finals Cheer on the finalists and see a winner crowned for the 11th cycle of the singing contest. Guest judges include out singer and Tony Award winner Levi Kreis, who'll also perform. Amy Metheny and Sofia Saffire host. Mayne Stage. 7pm. $13–$23.
Music with Pride: A Tribute to Gay Composers Hear performances of selections by the likes of Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland and Samuel Barber at this fundraiser for Team to End AIDS. Lake View Presbyterian Church. 7pm. $10 suggested donation.
Back Lot Bash Comedy Kickoff The women's fest kicks off its tenth year with an evening of comedy hosted by Gwen La Roka. Julie Goldman, Sandra Valls and Brandy Howard are scheduled to appear. Mayne Stage. 7pm. $15–$25.
Frathouse Thursdays Just try to find elbow room at this throwback to the house party days of college when beer pong, 20-ounce brews and hot boys ruled. Scarlet Bar. 9pm. Free.
Pride & Joy Kick off Pride weekend with the Friends of the Chicago Gay & Lesbian Hall of Fame's 20th annual fundraiser, this year on the Center on Halsted's rooftop terrace. The price of admission includes four drinks. Center on Halsted. 5:30pm. $20.
Pride Cruise Float away with the Chicago Reader on its third annual maritime bash aboard the Tall Ship Windy featuring food, booze, live entertainment and (hopefully) a dreamy skyline sunset. Dress in sailor or cruise-ship attire and, remember, the boat leaves at 7:30pm, so none of this fashionably late shit, okay? Chicago drag diva Shea Couleé, Brooklyn dance-popper Xenia Rubinos and Slo ’Mo's DJ Tess provide entertainment. Departing from Navy Pier. 7pm. $40.
Back Lot Bash The Andersonville alternative continues with a new early addition: Back Lot Baby and Family Day, from 11am to 3pm, features children's musicians, author readings, face painting and more fun for LGBTQ families and their friends. Adults $5, kids $2, under 2 free. After 3pm the Bash goes 21 and up as The Real L Word's Whitney Mixter and Sara Bettencourt host a lineup of local bands including Dot Dot Dot and The Student Body. $15. Parking lot in rear of Cheetah Gym Andersonville.
Dyke March The fierce celebration of community activism and queer solidarity returns to Uptown for a second year, kicking off and winding up in Margate Park. 2pm–6pm. Free.
Dyke March After Party The Chicago Dyke March Collective teams up with Chances DJs for the official after party. Fat Cat. 8pm. Free.
44th Annual Pride Parade Former NFL player Wade Davis is the grand marshal for the 44th annual soufflé of queer goodness. This year's parade will again follow the new route established last year, kicking off at Montrose and Broadway for a fairly straight shot (pun intended) south to Diversey and Sheridan. It's the culmination of what's sure to be a full week of rainbow-tinted reveling. 12pm. Free.
Pride North Rogers Park's chill Pride Sunday block party expands to two blocks in its third year, with DJs getting started at the north stage at Glenwood and Lunt in the morning, and another DJ stage setting up at Glenwood and Farwell after the weekly farmers' market wraps up at 2pm. In the evening, the north stage has music from dance-pop singer Mark Ortega and ubiquitous cover band Sixteen Candles. Glenwood Ave between Farwell Ave and Lunt Ave. 10am–9pm. Free.