Palm Beach County’s premiere LGBTQ+ Pride Festival, Palm Beach Pride, is returning to Bryant Park in Lake Worth Beach, FL on March 25 & March 26, from 12pm-6pm both days. The Palm Beach Pride Parade takes place on March 26, at 11am on Lake Avenue in Downtown Lake Worth Beach.
“Pride festivals everywhere are places of intention; safe spaces where we can be our authentic selves and enjoy spending time with family and friends. Palm Beach Pride is no exception,” explains Julie Seaver, CEO of Compass Community Center and organizers of Palm Beach Pride. “This year, Compass celebrates 35 years of direct services in the county and we can’t imagine a more paramount year to celebrate!”
Palm Beach Pride is a family and pet -friendly event. As in years past, anyone under the age of 18 will be admitted to the park for free. Tickets are $10 pre-sale and $12 at the event (all proceeds go directly back into the community through Compass, a 501c3 non-profit organization). Tickets sales are online this year leading up to the event and can be purchased at CompassGLCC.com. This is the only place to buy official tickets.
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Pride will be run from the stage by local celebrities Velvet Lenore, Melissa St. John, Rianna Petrone and Ariel Rimm. The four well known emcees keep the fun going while adding a bit of flare through their own performances throughout the weekend.
We spoke with Velvet about her involvement at Palm Beach pride and she said: “I have been performing and hosting Palm Beach Pride for 19 years, and I continue to enjoy performing at pride as its family oriented and a great bonding event Palm Beaches LGBTQ+ members and our allies. I always love to give back to my community. I feel it’s a blessing for me to be a part of Palm Beach Pride every year!”
They will be joined by newly crowned 2023 Miss Palm Beach Pride, Vasti Love Montana, who will be performing on both Saturday and Sunday. We asked Vasti how excited she was to be performing at Pride and what she plans on doing this year with her title. She said: “I am super excited to be performing, once again, at Palm Beach Pride, but this year its even more special as I am your Miss Palm Beach Pride. It’s like I said at the pageant this reign is not only for me, but for my Latin community, my family, and my chosen family. My goal is to reach out to the locals within the community and talk about knowing their status and to let them know I am here for them…LATINOS STANDING TOGETHER.”
They are delighted to have an all-star lineup of local and national talent. The Synergy Twins are Sunday’s headliners and will be appearing after the highly anticipated performance from the Queen of the Palm Beaches, Velvet Lenore. The Gypsy Lane Band is performing on Sunday; the band includes members of the original recording band members of the Village People and musicians that toured for KC & the Sunshine Band and Gloria Estefan. Additional entertainers can be viewed on CompassGLCC.com and include Antonio Edwards, Lenora Jaye, RogerThat, DJ Wil Mello, Kiowa, the JD Danner Band, and S. Saik.
Cassandra Cass has been named the 2023 Palm Beach Pride Grand Marshal and will hit the main stage with her performance on Sunday. Cassandra is an internationally known actress, comedian and performer who has appeared on numerous television programs and documentaries including the GLAAD award-winning reality show “Strut”. She is a tireless advocate for transgender and LGBTQ+ rights and has a personal motto of “Labels are for Products, not People.”
“We want to celebrate our community and one of our favorite ways to do that is focusing on the amazing, diverse talent we have right here in South Florida,” says Adrienne Percival, Compass’ Development Director “Giving local artists and entertainers this type of platform is crucial for all of us to experience the weekend as family, gathering together and uniting in community.”
Changes this year include an internal Health Village, where guests will be able to get information on a variety of health-related concerns, free rapid HIV testing, and COVID vaccines (provided by the US Department of Health and Human Services).
The Youth Village will be featuring a number of free and fun activities, including free face painting provided by a generous sponsorship from the Marcy and Leona Chanin Foundation. The Compass Youth Department will also be selling 3”x5” Pride flags that represent the many different communities under the LGBTQ+ umbrella.
And with over 125 vendors, there will be truly something for everyone.
Organizers also want to ensure that everything is being done to create a safe space for all festival attendees. No bags larger than small backpacks, purses, and fanny packs will be allowed into the park. Clear bags are preferred and any bags that are brought in will be spot checked to prevent prohibited items from entering the park.
For more information or to purchase advance tickets, go to: Compassglcc.com.