This weekend marked the 36th annual Long Beach Pride festival and regardless of the gloomy Southern California weather, thousands showed up to party and celebrate the LGBTQ+ in rainbow style. This year’s theme, A Million Moments of Pride, acknowledged the 50th anniversary of Stonewall, the riots that launched annual celebrations of LGBTQ+ around the world. Long Beach is one of the biggest hubs for LGBTQ+ diversity in California, welcoming queer individuals from all walks of life. The city’s mayor, Robert Garcia, is the openly gay and has become a beacon of advocacy for the celebration of the Long Beach’s LGBTQ+ community. Garcia is the youngest person, first Latino male, and first gay person of color elected to Long Beach City Council.
Long Beach Pride is the first festival in Southern California that kicks off pride season. This year, headlining acts included Big Freedia and American Idol drag queen contestant Ada Vox. The festival included numerous dance tents and featured a leather zone where folks got to experience the world of fetish and kink. On Sunday, a little morning drizzle wasn’t enough to stop the parade down Ocean Boulevard.
Here’s a look at the incredible weekend kicking off pride season at Long Beach Pride!