Lawrence PRIDE to make big return with parade, party

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With the return of Lawrence PRIDE, MsAmanda Love is excited to feel the love of the community that has followed the parade down Massachusetts Street each year, prior to the pandemic.

The cheers from spectators downtown are a reminder of the love “you forget that was there,” Love said. “It’s just going to be wild.” 

Lawrence PRIDE — previously called PRIDE for the Masses — will resume Saturday, June 12, after skipping an in-person event last year amid COVID-19. 


Festivities will start with a gathering at 4 p.m. at South Park, followed by a pride march down Mass. The party, featuring LGBTQ+ musicians and drag performers, will follow at Abe & Jake’s Landing, 8 E. Sixth St. 

The lineup includes Cuee, a Lawrence-based trans rapper; indie rock band The Creepy Jingles; and drag performers Raven Jade Von’Du, Novacayne DeMornay, Jaharia Von’Du and Milez Long. 

The parade’s grand marshall — or grand Marcia, Love said — is Miss Gay Kansas United States 2020 Deja Brooks. Love will serve as PRIDE’s “host with the most.” 

Fally Afani/I Heart Local Music MsAmanda Love performs at a previous year’s PRIDE for the Masses event.

Love said the party will be free and family-friendly, though “there might be a dirty joke here, a curse word there.” And the venue has a classy feeling with a lot of open space, Love said, that will make it “real special this year.” 

Love has also hosted Thirsty Thursday drag variety shows at the Jazzhaus for several years. Those shows have recently returned, too, following a break amid the pandemic, and Love said that “people are ready.” 

“We were as full as we could be — one in, one out, all night long,” Love said of the first show back. And summer shows are usually slower, but the crowd hasn’t let up yet, Love said. 

Tonight’s Thirsty Thursday event is Bangerz Ball, and next week’s is Novacayne’s Panty Party. Shows start at 10 p.m. at Jazzhaus, 926 Massachusetts St. 

Lawrence PRIDE is sponsored by I Heart Local Music. Follow the PRIDE event page on Facebook, and I Heart Local Music on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for updates. 

Jeff Burkhead/Backstory Photography People walk in the Pride parade down Massachusetts Street on June 8, 2019.
Fally Afani/I Heart Local Music A group participates in the Pride parade down Massachusetts Street on June 8, 2019.
Jeff Burkhead/Backstory Photography A crowd gathers outside the Granada for Pride for the Masses.
Fally Afani/I Heart Local Music A crowd gathers during PRIDE for the Masses on June 8, 2019.

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