march and party

PHOTOS: Miami Beach Pride was a celebration of wins and a challenge to keep fighting

A gaggle of of young Miami gays posing in front of the Great Miami COnvention & Visotors Bureau float before the parade.
A gaggle of young Miami gays posing in front of the Great Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau float before the parade.

“Change is going to come,” declared Billy Porter, the Grand Marshall of Miami Beach Pride. Donning a floral caftan, his speech at the opening night VIP reception reflected this year’s theme of “Pride. Progress. Perseverance.”

Miami Beach Pride grand marshal Billy Porter receiving the key to the city.
Miami Beach Pride grand marshal Billy Porter receives the key to the city.

“It is not 1963,” continued Porter We cannot use the same tactics. It’s time to reengage. It’s time to pay attention again. It’s time to get in the streets again. It’s not a parade. It’s a march again. That’s what it was when we started. Then the change came and we parted. Now we can march and party.”

Jessica Wild and Robert Rainwater manning the stage at the 'Back to the 80's Bash.'
Jessica Wild and Robert Rainwater manning the stage at the ‘Back to the 80’s Bash.’

And Miami Beach certainly knows how to party. The festivities kicked off with the ‘Back to the 80’s Bash’ at Lummus Park. Hosted by local drag queen Jessica Wild, the night featured breakdancers, retro fashion, and live performances showcasing the music of gay icons such as Madonna and Tina Turner. The 1980s theme was a subtle nod to a decade marked by homophobia and the beginning of the AIDS epidemic when the queer community embraced its ability to persevere.

An homage to the iconic 80's movie 'Risky Business.'
An homage to the iconic 80’s movie ‘Risky Business.’

Like most Pride weekends, the revelry crescendoed into Sunday’s Pride Parade. The afternoon was populated with entertainment notables such as Lisa Rinna and June Diane Raphael sharing the streets with local celebrities like DJ Latrice. For Latrice, the welcoming nature of the event was an extension of Miami Beach’s character.

Miami Beach locals and tourists filling the streets to watch the parade and show off their pride.
Miami Beach locals and tourists fill the streets to watch the parade and show off their pride.

“Everywhere you go in Miami, it’s like a warm hug,” beamed Latrice, sipping a mojito at the post-parade VIP party. The international DJ, who identifies as a heterosexual Ace woman, has dominated the turntables in cities across the globe, from Korea to Croatia to Montenegro. But when it comes to inclusion, nothing beats her hometown of Miami.

DJ Latrice flaunting her metallic futuristic aesthetic a top a float in the Miami Beach Pride Parade.
DJ Latrice flaunting her metallic futuristic aesthetic a top a float in the Miami Beach Pride Parade.

“Everyone is just so welcoming. And even though you don’t necessarily have to be from here, you feel like you’re from here because everyone accepts you, especially during Pride.”

Like Billy Porter, DJ Latrice reflected on progress within the LGBTQ+ community.

“As a black heterosexual woman, I’ve had challenges being who I am. But because the gay community has made the world more welcoming and open, I feel that it’s helped me to move forward.” 

A group of Miami drag queens riding their Pride float
A group of Miami drag queens waiting to step off.

For those who missed this year’s Miami Beach Pride, we’ve snatched some of our favorite pix of the parade, the parties, and plenty more.

Photography by Mike Ciriaco

Kimberly Nichole channeling Tina Turner at the 'Back to the 80's Bash."
Kimberly Nichole channeling Tina Turner at the ‘Back to the 80’s Bash.”
A duo breakdancing, a form of street choreography pioneered in the 1980s.
A duo breakdancing, a form of street choreography pioneered in the 1980s.
Local Drag queen Tiara.
Local drag queen Tiara.
Spanish media personality David Pallares serving sass in a hippie-themed tank top.
Spanish media personality David Pallares serving sass in a hippie-themed tank top.
Miami locals shimmering in their disco ensembles.
Miami locals shimmering in their disco ensembles.
Local personality Frenchie tending bar at the Miami Beach Pride festival.
Local personality Frenchie tending bar at the Miami Beach Pride festival.
MIstr ambassadors promoting PrEP awareness at the Miami Beach Pride festival.
MIstr ambassadors promoting PrEP awareness at the Miami Beach Pride festival.
A local drag queen giving life at The Palace's drag brunch.
A local drag queen giving life at The Palace’s drag brunch.
The beautiful boys of The Palace performing their shirtless dance routine.
The beautiful boys of The Palace perform their shirtless dance routine.
A pedestrian dropping into a splint in front of The Palace.
A pedestrian drops into the splits in front of The Palace.
William Abrue and his besties strutting over to the parade on Sunday morning.
William Abrue and his besties strutting over to the parade on Sunday morning.
Argentinian influencer Augustina Cabaleiro living her best life ontop of a Miami Beach Pride parade float.
Argentinian influencer Augustina Cabaleiro is living her best life on top of a Miami Beach Pride parade float.
A leather-clad duo at the parade.
A leather-clad duo at the parade.
David Pallares serving a metallic tank top on on a futurism themed Pride float.
David Pallares serving a metallic tank top on a futurism-themed Pride float.
British journalist Emily Chudy posing in front of Miami Beach's iconic clock thermomter.
British journalist Emily Chudy posing in front of Miami Beach’s iconic clock thermometer.
Pablo Carrasco fanning himself in the Miami heat. "Who's your daddy?"
Pablo Carrasco fanning himself in the Miami heat. “Who’s your daddy?”
Locals flocking both the streets and balconies to view the parade.
Locals flocking both the streets and balconies to view the parade.
The next generation coming out to support the community, living proof of the progress we have made thus far.
A member of Gen Alpha is coming out to support the community, living proof of our progress thus far.

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