Seattle Pride Guide: 5 Can't-Miss Events

Plan your Pride weekend with these performances, parade watch spots and doggy drag shows.
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The annual rainbow party sweeps Seattle this weekend.

Pride weekend is upon us and festivities abound, with two organizations responsible for much of the fun.

Billed as the country’s largest free Pride festival, PrideFest Capitol Hill goes down Saturday in Cal Anderson Park, along Denny Way and between John and Roy streets on Broadway Avenue.

On Sunday, Seattle Pride celebrates its 43rd year, as its beloved parade streams down 2nd Avenue in Belltown. Meanwhile, the PrideFest crew throws a three-stage festival at the Seattle Center, giving day two a more expansive, citywide feel.

There are infinite ways to enjoy Pride weekend, but here five events you won’t want to miss.

Doggy Drag Show at PrideFest Capitol Hill
From 2:30-3 p.m. Saturday in Cal Anderson park, dogs of all sizes will be dressed up in all the colors of rainbow and paraded around for treats and love pats in their very own drag show. This is a terrific event for the kiddos or anyone who loves a well-dressed pup. The free PrideFest Capitol Hill runs from 12-8 p.m. and features other family-friendly fun.

Foundation Night Club’s “DIVINE” with DJ Grind
Electronic music has long been an emblem of LGBTQ love and inclusivity. Seattle’s Foundation Night Club is one of the best places to get your boogie on to the latest beats, and they have two amazing Pride-themed events this weekend. Saturday’s looks especially fun, as Verotica Events presents “DIVINE” with DJ Grind. The promoter tells Dance Music Northwest, it’ll be an “intimate celebration of what it means to be alive.” We’ll dance to that. 9 p.m., Sat., $30 ($50 for Verotica Events Pride weekend pass). 

Pony’s Summer of Love
Pony is one of Seattle’s most iconic gay bars. An old 1930s gas station transformed, Pony is a tribute to the dive-y gay bars of 1970s San Francisco. Plus, Pony has awesome staff, a top-rate karaoke night and the best decorative papier-mâché penises in town. During Pride, Pony is adopting a “Summer of Love” theme: a “love-in” packed with great DJs, hosts and other antics. For a more local experience, this Capitol Hill bar’s weekend-long party is the place to be. $5 after 9 p.m. Fri., 6 p.m. Sat. and 3 p.m. Sun. 

Where to watch the parade
The big Sunday parade starts at 11 a.m., running from 4th Avenue and Union Street to 2nd Avenue and Denny Way, where it disassembles sometime around 1:30 p.m. For a special viewing experience, some spend $30 for paid bleacher seating along the route (reservations on Seattle Pride’s website). But some bars and restaurants offer parade prime viewing with food and drink promos. Frolik Kitchen & Cocktails hosts its Pride Parade Brunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on their patio, while Mama’s Cantina peddles an entrée and a frozen margarita for $15 after the parade starts. 

Mary Lambert at PrideFest Seattle Center
A free, all-ages festival at Seattle Center runs from noon to 8 p.m. The lineup is wonderfully queer and led by Seattle songwriter Mary Lambert. Lambert was working three restaurant jobs when Macklemore asked her to collaborate on “Same Love.” After the hit, which celebrates LGBTQ love, skyrocketed to the top of the charts, pop culture’s relationship with the queer community shifted forever. Lambert, who plays 2 p.m. Sunday on the South Fountain Lawn is a soulful, talented performer worth catching live, especially for a performance of her megahit. It’s an ideal way to cap your Pride weekend.

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