Sharon Needles will headline the 2015 DSPride Festival on Saturday
Sharon Needles will headline the 2015 DSPride Festival on Saturday

Duluth-Superior Pride kicks off on Thursday with a slew of events that includes a train ride, a boat cruise, youth events, art and history exhibitions, and a festival headlined by Sharon Needles.

The weekend of festivities begins on Thursday, Sept. 3 at 5pm with a Mayor’s Reception at the Duluth Depot. Duluth Mayor Don Ness and supportive mayors from around the region will celebrate the kickoff of Duluth-Superior Pride with food, cocktails, live music, and a performance from aerialist Alex Loch.

Hedwig and the Angry Inch at The Playhouse also kick off Pride weekend on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30pm. General admission is $20.

A series of art and history installations are also planned for the weekend. Rainbows and Roses is the creation of Gabriel Christopher Dee. The exhibition “captures scenes from the artist’s favorite location in Duluth–the Rose Garden at Leif Erikson Park. Dee uses this location as a visualization aid while meditating. The images are therefore depicted with an ethereal quality. Subtle rainbows will appear in each photo to correspond with GLBTAQI Pride in the Twin Ports.” Rainbows and Roses will be displayed at the St. Louis County Heritage and Arts Center and runs from Aug. 30 to Sept. 3 with a reception on Sept. 3 from 5-8pm

The We’re Everywhere exhibit will be hosted by the Zeitgeist Arts Cafe Atrium from Sept. 1-30. The exhibit features the art of Amy Peterson, a landscape photographer. :The We’re Everywhere Campaign started in 2014 in reaction to sweeping movements by some Conservatives across the nation to create laws designed to discriminate against the LGBTQI community. This is Amy’s way of pushing back against such continuing movements. Supporters of the LGBTQI community are everywhere and from all walks of life.” A reception will be held on Friday, Sept. 4 from 7-9pm.

Friday night brings three Pride parties. In Superior, the Main Club is hosting Vinyl Party at 9pm with no cover. DJ Jesse will spin classic hits from the 1970s and 1980s.

Across the bay, the Duluth Flame is hosting the X Party with dancing and drinks starting at 9pm. The cover is $5.

For those under 21 years old, Youth Pride at the Clyde at Clyde Iron will have a DJ and dancing beginning at 8pm. There is no cover.

Saturday morning begins with The Hummingbird Family 5K Fun Run/Walk, now in its 10th year. Named in memory of Hummingbird, a local resident who passed away several years ago, the run/walk along the Western Lake Superior Waterfront Trail in Duluth. Entry fee is $20 and begins at 10am with registration at 9am.

The Bayfront Pride Festival runs from 11am to 7pm on Saturday with two beer tents, vendors, and a children and families area. Live performances will be held throughout the day including RuPaul’s Drag Race stars Sharon Needles and Miss Fame at 6pm. This free event will also include the Duluth-Superior Pride Historical Collection documenting 29 years of LGBT community in the Twin Ports.

On Saturday night, Superior’s two LGBT bars join together for the Block Party beginning at 8pm. A $10 cover will get patrons into both bars and a shuttle service will ferry people between the two bars. The cover goes toward the Duluth-Superior Pride committee’s efforts to create the weekend of events each year.

A free breakfast and Pride worship service will be held on Sunday at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church. Breakfast starts at 8:30am and worship service begins at 10am.

The Duluth-Superior Pride Parade begins at noon on Sunday. The route runs down Tower Avenue in Superior from Broadway to Belknap.

Following the parade, Pride goers have three choices for their mode of celebration: train, boat, or picnic.

The Foo Foo Choo Choo starts with a free pre-party at the Duluth Depot at 2pm, and then a $30 trip departs at 3:30pm with food, cash bar, dancing, and a DJ.

The annual Fruit Float also board at 3:30pm. For $40, the 3-hour cruise includes cash bar, food, and a DJ.

The Pride Family Picnic also kicks off at 3:30pm at Billings Park. The free potluck picnic includes games and family fare.

The Pride festivities wrap up on Sunday at 8pm with the annual Drag Show. A $5 cover goes towards services for people affected by HIV in the Twin Ports area. The event is hosted by the Main Club.

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