6 Festive Ways To Celebrate Pride In The Bay Area

Pride decor
Pride decor

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

One of the things I love most about San Francisco is how the city whole-heartedly embraces Pride month. Once June hits, an explosion of rainbows abounds, and there’s a joyfulness of inclusion in the air. From the traditional parade to Pride-themed dessert specials, there are plenty of fun ways to get in on the colorful action. Below, some of our favorite ways to honor Pride.

From now until the end of June, Barry’s Bootcamp is hosting a special seven classes in seven days challenge. Join Erica Stenz for United We Sprint a fitness test encourages unity, teamwork, and community. 10% of the proceeds from those who sign up for the seven-class series will be donated to the Family Equality Council, an organization that changes attitudes and policies to ensure that everyone is respected and loved, especially children with parents who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer. If you want to up your fitness game before the Fourth of July, now is the time to do it!

Coming into town for the weekend of the Pride Parade? Book a room at the W San Francisco. The hotel is offering two over-the-top themed suite packages: the first, the Folsom package, is inspired by the annual Folsom Street Festival where BDSM falls wild. The second, Unicorn package, features bright and bold decor that illuminates uniqueness. Both packages involve a closet full of props and dress-up clothing, a Pride flag selfie station, and a bar area stocked with spirits and snacks. The package is available from June 22-24 with reservations open on June 14.

The BLTG sandwich
The BLTG sandwich

Photo Credit: The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco

On Saturday, July 16, the Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco is hosting a special Pride Afternoon Tea, from 1 to 2 p.m. Guests can enjoy rainbow-colored pastries while supporting the Humans Rights Campaign. The hotel is donating 50% of proceeds from the tea to the organization. Also on the menu? A BLTG sandwich with bacon, lettuce, tomato, and guacamole and Polk Punch, a colorful rum concoction that will get the party started.

Hakkasan's Escape to Paradise Pride cocktail
Hakkasan’s Escape to Paradise Pride cocktail

Photo Credit: Hakkasan

Hakkasan is serving a special cocktail in the weeks surrounding the main event. Director of beverage Constantin Alexander has created a potent libation with St. George Rum, coconut, allspice, vanilla, lime, and pineapple. The drink is the ideal tropical escape from June Gloom.

Green Lantern
Green Lantern

Photo Credit: Bluestem Brasserie

The best place to watch the parade? Bluestem Brasserie. The restaurant is hosting a viewing party on their rooftop terrace which directly overlooks Market Street and the parade route. Beginning at 10 a.m., the team is throwing a party complete with brunch and specialty cocktails like the Green Lantern—a pisco, basil, and cracked black pepper beverage. Cheers!

A bird's eye view of Civic Center during a past Pride
A bird’s eye view of Civic Center during a past Pride

Photo Credit: Pride San Francisco

The 48th-annual official Pride celebration takes place at City Hall on Saturday and Sunday, June 23 and 24. There will be over 20 community-run stages with live music, avant-garde artists, comedy, and competitions. The theme is Generations of Strength and pays tribute to Harvey Milk’s Gay Freedom Day, which he hosted 40 years ago. The parade starts at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday. Last year’s parade had over 270 participants and this year’s event promises to be just as big. The VIP After Party at City Hall is not to be missed. Expect politicos like state senator Scott Weiner in attendance mingling with the crowd.