June is Pride Month and here on Long Island, there are parades, performances and other happenings supporting the LGBTQ+ community including two new events in Farmingdale and East Hampton. From 5K runs to live entertainment, here are events you won’t want to miss that celebrate acceptance for all:
BABYLON PRIDE PARADE
Sidewalks will be filled with vibrant colors and people as floats make their way along Main Street and Deer Park Avenue during the third annual Babylon Pride Pararde.
Organizers Bob McKeown, an elementary school teacher and coach from Babylon Village, and Roman, a village resident, launched the first parade in 2020 and were impressed by community participation. "It's overwhelming," Roman says of the crowd, "in the most beautiful way." Both McKeown and Roman expect this year’s event to draw even more people than last, plus Roman says to expect to see more “fabu-losity” on display.
All the funding for the parade goes through the nonprofit Hope Floats, with funds raised benefiting local GSAs (Gay-Straight Alliances or Gender-Sexuality Alliances) in area high schools, and a related scholarship fund has also been approved. There is no entrance fee to the parade as McKeown notes, “it’s free, open to anybody to come and feel accepted.”
INFO June 5 at 3 p.m.; babylonpride.org
LGBT NETWORK’S LI PRIDE IN FARMINGDALE
The LGBT Network has been organizing Pride Month events for more than 30 years, and this year marks the debut of a celebration in Farmingdale Village and the return of parades put on hiatus during the pandemic. "We want to bring Pride to different downtowns on Long Island," says David Kilmnick, president and CEO of the LGBT Network. "With all the great restaurants, bars and shops, Farmingdale makes great sense as we come back together.”
The event will shut down Main Street, including the Conklin Street intersection, where a concert stage will be arranged. Kilmnick expects a crowd of people, plus floats, cars and marching bands.
Kilmnick explains, "while we’ll be celebrating the LGBTQ+ community, this is also a celebration of all of Long Island … It’s great to see that Long Island Pride not only exists, it’s thriving, bringing more and more Long Islanders together.”
INFO June 12 from noon to 6 p.m.; free to attend; Farmingdale Village; A vendor fair takes place on the Village Green (between 361-385 Main St.). Parade starts at the intersection of Bethpage Road and Main Street (at Northside Elementary School) and goes the length of Main Street. lipride.org
HAMPTONS PRIDE PARADE
Also new this year is a parade in the Hamptons. It'll close Main Street in East Hampton Village.
Tom House, the founder and president of Hamptons Pride, says the event will be "modest," but "a lot of excitement and enthusiasm" is expected. House adds there will be floats, plus group performances, marching units and decorated cars, including vintage automobiles for the Grand Marshals. There will also be music in the park until 3 p.m., following the parade.
INFO Lineup begins at 11 a.m. June 4 on Pond View Lane and Guild Hall. At noon, participants will march east on Main Street and continue to Herrick Park via Newton Lane, Railroad Avenue and Lumber Lane in East Hampton. Register at hamptonpride.org, 631-771-2044.
PRIDE 5K RUN/WALK
For anyone looking to stride in the name of Pride, the Junior Women’s Club of Bellerose, in conjunction with the Bellerose Village Recreation Department, is hosting a Pride 5K Run/Walk and Fun Run on June 5. Kate Marsanico, president of the Junior Women’s Club, says that the event was born in 2021 in support of a request by one of the club’s members, as she notes that “we have several LGBTQ families in our small, close-knit neighborhood so, of course, we wanted to show our support.” She adds, “we are anticipating an even bigger and better event this year.”
INFO 5K PRIDE run/walk at 10 a.m. ($25 per runner-up until May 30, $30 after) and Kids' Fun Run at 9:30 a.m. ($5 per child); 50 Superior Rd., Bellerose Village, runsignup.com
'PRIDEFEST' GRASS VOLLEYBALL PRIDE FESTIVAL
Another way to mark Pride Month is at the “PrideFest” Grass Volleyball Pride Festival, taking place June 11 at softball field six in Eisenhower Park. Organized by the regional volleyball organization VBLI, the event invites all to compete in a charity tournament. Portions of the registration fees benefit PFY, an arm of the Long Island Crisis Center advocating for younger members of the LGBTQ+ community in serving Nassau, Suffolk and Queens.
INFO 8 Park Blvd., East Meadow; 516-759-0955. Admission to play is $100 for double team, $200 per quad team; register at vbli.com.
PRIDE AT THE FARM
The Suffolk County Farm and Education Center is holding its free to attend Pride at the Farm event on June 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. Kids can meet the animals, do crafts, take wagon rides, enjoy a Drag Queen Story Hour with Annie Manildoo (at 5:30 p.m.) and a dance party with bubbles.
INFO 350 Yaphank Ave., Yaphank; 631-852-4600, ccesuffolk.org
PRIDE SUNDAY AT TERRA VITE WINERY AND VINEYARD
Over on the North Fork, Terra Vite Winery and Vineyard is offering an event benefiting the LGBT Network of Long Island. The Sunday Funday Festival will take place June 12 from 1 to 6 p.m., and for an $85 ticket, each guest gets two drinks and food samples. The day will also include lawn games, a live DJ, raffle tickets, Zumba classes, yoga sessions and a makeup station. The full Terra Vite menu and a food truck will be available for additional food and wine purchases. Tickets are available in advance via the Terra Vite site. Must be 21 and over to attend.
INFO 250 Manor Ln., Jamesport; 631-722-3416, terravitevineyard.com
“BEING EARNEST” PERFORMANCE
A “queer adaptation” of Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” by the nonprofit theater company EastLine Theatre is taking place at the Westbury Arts Council June 3-11. The group’s “Being Earnest” happens to coincide with Pride Month, and the rendition has LGBTQ+ representation. Reservations for tickets are $20 in advance and there’s also a Pride Month-themed art exhibition held upstairs at the playhouse for guests. Proof of vaccination and masks are required.
INFO 255 Schenck Ave., Westbury; 516-749-5047, eastlinetheatre.org