Pride Month is in full swing in the Valley of the Sun and there’s plenty happening. From now until the end of June, various LGBTQ-related events and affairs will be happening at venues across the metro Phoenix area as everyone fetes the occasion.
The Pride-related celebrations this year have an extra significance, as 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in New York City, widely considered to be the catalyst for the modern LGBTQ rights movement.
One of the places that locals will be celebrating both Pride Month or the anniversary will be at local bars and clubs. Numerous music and nightlife events will happen during June in honor of Pride, including special dance parties, drag shows, and concerts.
‘80s Night with VHS
Friday, June 14
4835 North 15th Avenue
Caravan’s house band, VHS, which serve up energetic covers of ‘80s favorites, will perform at the midtown Phoenix bar. The jams start at 9 p.m. and there’s no cover. Call 602-274-7756.
Give It Everything Saturdays' Pride Party
Saturday, June 15
Cash Nightclub & Lounge
1730 East McDowell Road
A special edition of Cash’s weekly “Give It Everything Saturdays” affair, this Pride party will include hot sets by Miss DJ MJ and DJ Torch, a performances by drag queen Carnita Asada, and drink specials like $5 well cocktails all night, and more. Doors open at 9 p.m. and promoters recommend arriving early since “it will be packed.” You can also get in cheaper since there’s a $5 cover before 11 p.m., $7 thereafter. Call 602-244-9943.
Pride Month at Karamba
Sunday, June 16 to Sunday, June 30
1724 East McDowell Road
Karamba will feature a number of special events over the next couple of weeks during Pride Month. On Sunday, June 16, for instance, Ruby’s Father’s Day show will take place starting at 10:30 p.m. Admission is free. A few nights later on Wednesday, June 19, local drag artists will re-create Ariana Grande’s Dangerous Woman Show. Start time is 10:30 p.m. and there’s no cover. Aubrey’s Male Turnabout happens on at 10:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 20, and is also free. Later on in June, you can catch the Skin Tight Beach Party featuring male dancers, giveaways, and after-hours until 4 a.m. (There’s a $5 cover.) The month wraps up on Sunday, June 30, with the Queen of Karamba performing at 10:30 p.m. Admission is free. Call 602-254-0231.
Wink's: A Special Tribute
Sunday, June 16
Stacy's at Melrose
4343 North Seventh Avenue
Long-defunct gay bar Wink’s Cabaret is the stuff of local LGBT scene legend. In honor of Pride Month, the folks at Stacy’s will be paying tribute to the place, which operated from 1984 to 2004, with an afternoon of memories being shared by those that frequented Wink’s. There will also be live music, comedy, and female impersonation performances. Devina Ross and Clayton McKee will host the event, which kicks off at 4:30 p.m. Drink specials include $1 wells, Rolling Rocks, and Bud Light pints from 2 to 7 p.m. Call 602-264-1700.
Sunday Tea Dances
Sunday, June 16, and Sunday, June 23
3110 North Central Avenue, Suite 175
Raise a toast to Pride Month at these weekly affairs, which will feature DJs in the mix dropping high-energy dance tunes. Meanwhile, bartenders will be serving local draft beers, signature cocktails, and happy hour specials. The partying goes from 3 to 7 p.m. and there’s no cover. Call 602-264-5307 for additional details.
Pussy Le Hoot & Friends
Sunday, June 16, through Sunday, June 30
727 West Camelback Road, Phoenix
Folks have been flocking to Charlie’s for its nightly entertainment offerings for decades, as the “little bitty piss ant country place” hosts drag shows, dance parties, go-go boys, and karaoke sessions on the regular. One of the most popular events is Pussy Le Hoot’s weekly spectacular on Sunday nights, which features numerous local drag performers doing their thing. It’s a “can’t miss” event during Pride Month or any other time of the year. Admission is free. Call 602-265-0224.
Wednesday, June 19
Musical Instrument Museum
4725 East Mayo Boulevard, Phoenix
The indie folk singer-songwriter and American Idol contestant, who identifies as bisexual and has previously released songs pertaining to LGBTQ issues, will perform at the MIM’s Musical Theater on Wednesday, June 19. She’s still touring in support of her 2017 album, Alive, and is likely to perform new and old material at the show, which gets going at 7 p.m. Admission is $35.50 to $45.50. Call 480-478-6000 for more info or to purchase tickets by phone.
Saturday, June 22
3110 North Central Avenue, #175
Local pro-LGBTQ cover band Femme Shui, which boasts the motto “no slow songs because they bring the party down,” will perform a special set at Kobalt from 6 to 9 p.m. They’ll also have swag available. The weekly karaoke session follows. Call 602-264-5307 for more.
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Friday, June 28, to Sunday, June 30
Pat O’s Bunkhouse
4428 North Seventh Avenue
Pat O’s, a long-running staple of the Valley’s LGBTQ bar scene, will offer a trio of events in honor of the 50th anniversary of Stonewall starting with a Black Out Party on Friday, June 28, at 9 p.m. where the lights will be kept low. A Tea Dance Party follows on Saturday, June 29, from 2 to 5 p.m. and the “Stonewall Beer Bust” happens on Sunday, June 30, starting at 3 p.m. with $1 Bud Light drafts and Kenny Thames and the Messengers performing at 7:30 p.m. Call 602-200-9154 for more details.
POSE: The Competition
Sunday, July 30
The Rock/La Roca
4129 North Seventh Avenue
Inspired by the hit FX television show of the same name, POSE: The Competition will feature local drag performers strutting their stuff for prizes and trophies. Participants will form various “hauses” and compete against each other in a variety of categories, including “Butch Queen Realness,” “Vogue,” “Face,” and more. Scoring will be determined by judges and the votes by the audience. The competition begins at 7 p.m. See the Arizona Drag website for tickets, info, and to sign up.