The Greater Palm Springs area is a hot spot for inclusion and the LGBTQ+ community, as it is always offering great celebrations, parades, and festivals. If you’re in the region and looking for some Pride fun, the following list is full of great ideas for you and your allies.
What to do for Pride in Palm Springs
Palm Springs Pride Parade
By far one of the most popular Pride events in the Greater Palm Springs region is none other than the Palm Springs Pride Parade. The event has been going on for over 35 years and always features craft and food vendors, activities, and multiple music stages. Featured performers for 2022 include the Palm Springs Gay Men’s Chorus, Tolliver, and Wannabe: A Spice Girls Tribute. Of course, attendees can also stop in and have a meal at any of the amazing restaurants along Palm Canyon Drive, which is closed to traffic to accommodate the crowd.
In 2022, the Palm Springs Pride Parade will be held downtown November 4th through 6th.
Cathedral City LGBT Days
Cathedral City hosts its LGBT Days in March, which makes it the first LGBT festival in the state of California each year. On the main stage, attendees can find drag queen performances, gay and lesbian choir sets, and music and popular songwriters. There are plenty of goods and food for sale, as local companies and individuals are welcome to participate as vendors. There are also performers, and if this sounds like your kind of event, you can also register to be a volunteer.
The first night includes the lighting of City Hall, which is an unforgettable and fun gathering full of festivities. On the last day of the event, LBGT Days features its “Bed Race & Parade.” Teams of 5 people work together to decorate a bed on wheels and subsequently race them against each other. Of course, the participants are typically all decked out for the event, too. Along with the bed race and the parade, there is also a “Champagne Brunch Party” on the last day.
The next LGBT Days will be held March 3rd through 5th at Cathedral City’s Town Square Park.
Desert Hot Springs Pride Festival
DiversityDHS is an LGBTQ+ nonprofit organization based in Desert Hot Springs that plans and facilitates various festivals and events throughout the year. This includes the Desert Hot Springs Pride Festival, which features various vendors, activities, food, and fun. The event has been postponed until an undetermined time in 2023, but the event is undoubtedly worth a visit so be sure to check the website to see if they have decided when the next festival will be held.
East Coachella Valley Pride
East Coachella Valley Pride organizes various LGBTQ+ events throughout the year, including an annual festival that is typically held on a Saturday in October. The event welcomes all ages and features local artists, craft vendors, live bands, drag shows, and good food. The organization also facilitates other events throughout the year including Pride film fests, LGBTQ+ pool parties, workshops, and tours.
Places to Stay
While most people think of parades and festivities when it comes to Pride, you may also want to stay in a LGBTQ+-specific hotel while you are visiting. The Hacienda at Warm Sands says it is “much more than a fashionable gay resort,” and visitors continuously rave about the incredible and attentive staff. CCBC Resort Hotel is a clothing-optional resort located in Cathedral City that has an amazing restaurant on-site and regularly offers thrilling events like “Big Daddy Bingo.”
LGBTQ+-Friendly Dining and Drinks
One Eleven Bar is located in Cathedral City and is an excellent place to go if you’re looking to enjoy your refreshments on a patio. This gay-friendly establishment has a small yet customizable drink menu and gets its delicious Mexican food from the Las Carretas restaurant. This place offers Happy Hour every day from 2:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M.
The Roost, also located in Cathedral City, is a member of the Cathedral City Gay Business Association and has something happening almost every single day of the week ranging from cabaret to drag and other live shows and entertainment. Happy Hour is 3:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M. Monday through Thursday and from 12:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M. on Friday and weekends.
Chill Bar is unquestionably on the list of best Pride-celebrating establishments in the heart of Palm Springs all year round. Featuring go-go boys and events like drag bingo, this establishment on Arenas Road also has great food, drinks, and music.
Oscar’s on E. Tahquitz Canyon Way in Palm Springs is a very welcoming spot with a huge Cabaret Showroom leading out to an amazing courtyard. This establishment has the longest running Sunday Drag Brunch and also features “Mimosa Men” Saturdays.
Rio Azul Mexican Bar and Grill is one of the greatest places to experience a drag brunch. The so-called Desert Divas brunch offers excellent drinks (including a highly-recommended $7 mimosa) and excellent entrees like enchiladas and tacos. The entertainment, of course, is the best part. Be sure to book in advance if you’re wanting to experience it.
Ultimately, there is no shortage of LGBTQ+-friendly events, attractions, and establishments in the Greater Palm Springs region, so gather your allies and take a road trip for some good, LGBTQ+ fun.