On March 30th and 31st, Compass Community Center will host their annual Palm Beach Pride at Bryant Park in Lake Worth. The festival is expected to draw over twenty thousand people to town for the weekend’s ever-expanding number of events and activities, which include the annual Pride Parade through downtown Lake Worth, a “Youth Village” that is available to families on both days, delicious international cuisines, and world-class entertainment.
One of the things everyone looks forward to at Pride Palm Beach is the production that Velvet LeNore is going to produce and star in. It has a become tradition, and on her 20th anniversary of performing at Pride, I thought I would sit down with her for a short Hotspots interview:
How did you get involved with Pridefest?
Eric Miller was one of my really good friends and he worked for Compass at the time. He started doing drag for fundraisers for Pride and he asked me if I would perform with him. Since I did the fundraisers they asked me to perform at pride and I loved it.
You are known for your productions at Pride, how did that happen?
My second year of Pride, I did the production of Lion King for my birthday 1 week prior at Rebar. It went so well we decided to perform it at Pridefest. At Pride the production went over so well that Compass asked me to continue bringing productions every year.
How do you keep the production fresh every year?
I usually feed off what’s going off in the world combined with what the theme of Pridefest is that year. For example one year the theme for Pridefest was “Glee” so we did an entire Glee production.
How does it feel to be celebrating your 20th anniversary of performing at Pridefest?
I’m excited and proud that I have been blessed to do it for 20 years. I am inspired to inspire, and so many of the young gay population tell me they look forward to my production, which puts a fire underneath me to make it better and better.
What should we expect this year from your production?
I don’t want to tell you exactly what I am doing, as I want everyone to be surprised. However, we have added more people to the production, have the best costumes we have ever had and we have added general effects and explosives. It’s going to be something you don’t want to miss.
Tickets are for each day of the festival are $8 until Thursday, March 28, and $10 starting on Friday, March 29. Tickets can be purchased in advance at Compass, the Book Cellar, Studio 205, Rooster’s, The Mad Hatter, Penny’s at the Duke, and Fort Dix. For more information about Palm Beach Pride, go to compassglcc.com/community-and-events/palm-beach-pride/.
Compass Community Center is Palm Beach County’s only LGBTQ Community Center and works to diminish stereotypes by challenging long-standing misconceptions about the character of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer community. Without a doubt, Palm Beach Pride exists as an important component of Compass’ efforts to create a safe place to live and allows for more effective local advocacy. The event has now grown from a small gathering to one of the largest festivals in South Florida.