You belong at the Pride Winnipeg festival, which is back this summer from May 26 to June 4.
For 34 years Pride Winnipeg has been serving and celebrating the city’s GSRD (gender, sexual, and relationship diverse) community, having staged the first Winnipeg Pride in 1987. Over the years the community has marked many milestones, plus, did you know the term Two-Spirit was coined here in Winnipeg?
After successfully hosting Fierté Canada Pride in 2022, this year’s Pride Festival promises to continue to operate in an accessible, sustainable, inclusive and diverse fashion, all while hosting so many fun events here on Treaty 1 Territory: the traditional lands of the Anishinaabeg, Cree, Dakota and Dene Peoples, and the homeland of the Red River Métis.
Here’s just a few of the happenings happening from May 26 to June 4 during the Pride Winnipeg Festival, along with numerous community events that take us to and through the Pride Festival.
Raising of the Pride Flag – On May 26 at noon, come see the Rainbow Flag being raised to mark the start of the celebrations.
Club 200 at the centre of it all – Club 200 has everything you are looking for during Pride. From the 10th annual Lesbian Lube Wrestling (May 30 at 9 p.m.) to Ride for Pride – Dykes on Bikes Winnipeg Fundraiser (June 3 at 9 a.m.) to a Pride Pancake Breakfast (June 4, 8 a.m.) to so much nightlife.
So many participating venues! – There are numerous spots to take in Pride activities during the festival. If you look on the Community Events Page, you’ll see everything from a service at the Scandinavian Cultural Centre (June 4), to multiple events at The Edge Gallery, to a First Fridays drag show at Modern Electric Lunch (June 2 at 7:45 p.m.) and a patio party at Little Brown Jug at 7 p.m. also on June 2. Plus, Fairmont Winnipeg is holding one of its drag brunch extravaganzas at 11:30 a.m. on May 28, and you won’t want to miss the return of the Queerly Beloved Comedy Show at 8 p.m. at the Limelight Karaoke Bar that evening.
Our cultural institutions are taking part too, including Winnipeg Art Gallery-Qaumajuq’s Black Film Collective event on June 2 and its Wahkotowin: Two-Spirit Drop-In Pride Mixer on May 28 at 11 a.m. The Manitoba Museum has a Queer Activism’s exhibit and will launch the If These Walls Could Talk: 50 Years of 2SLGBTQ+ Activism in Winnipeg exhibition on May 26 at 12:45 p.m. The Rady Centre’s Berny Theatre will show The Holy Closet on June 1 as part of its Winnipeg International Jewish Film Festival and there are a number of exhibitions at The Edge Gallery. Plus, because we take Pride all year, spots like Park Alleys, The Good Will Social Club and The Park Theatre will have events on all summer long.
So many things happening at The Canadian Museum for Human Rights – Leading up to the Festival, the CMHR is hosting a number of events this month. On May 20 you can bring the family to see Rainbow Tales (10 a.m.) featuring fun stories for all ages from drag queens.
After the flag is raised on May 26, head over to the Museum at 7 p.m. to watch Lady Muse and The Inspirations. This free show will feature fun covers from one of Canada’s hottest bands along with Lady Muse’s personal brand of entertainment, while drinks and snacks will be available for purchase. Then, on Saturday night, June 3, the Rainbow Resource Centre is collaborating with the Museum to celebrate its 50 years of support and advocacy. Saturday Night Pride starts at 9 p.m. and features an all-star lineup of drag performers – including Synthia Kiss of Canada’s Drag Race – music from Mama Cutsworth and a re-creation of the legendary Ms. Purdy’s lounge (one of the city’s top LGBTQ clubs for three decades) right in the Museum.
GORGE Queer Arts + Drag Festival and a Pride send-off for The Tallest Poppy – While we’re all bummed about the pending dining room closure at The Tallest Poppy – a Winnipeg cultural and culinary institution – we can at least take comfort that Talia and the team are going out with a bang with a little help from their friends at Synonym Art Consultation. We love everything that Synonym Art Consultation does for this city, from making the city's walls shine during its annual Wall-to-Wall Festival, to its numerous community events, which includes its GORGE Queer Arts + Drag Festival. To quote, GORGE is "an annual celebration of the legacy and future of 2SLGBTQIA+ art and drag based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on Treaty 1 Territory. Winnipeg's drag scene is recognized for its collaborative, community-based approach to the art form, which sets it apart from many other cities who boast hierarchical, fame-based models that are intended to uplift individual performers, leaving others behind." Just look how many performers GORGE has lineup for Pride Winnipeg 2023.
The GORGE Presents Drag Brunch: One Hit Wonders is already sold-out on May 27 at The Tallest Poppy, but you can still attend the Tallest Poppy Send Off/Pride Kickoff on that evening from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. featuring so many performers and DJs.
Outside of the Poppy, Gorge is also hosting The Sunset Pride Lounge on Friday, June 2 from 7:30 p.m to 11:30 p.m. at The Forks' Room 201 (located in the second floor of The Forks Market). On top of headline Zaki Ibrahim, this event will also feature a DJ set by Kilusan and drag performances by Soleil Midowne, Purple Have and Cake. Get your tickets here and find more info here.
Getting sporty – Pride ultimate frisbee takes place in Assiniboine Park on June 3 at 9 a.m., and there’s a Pride Skate at 1 p.m. at Sargent Skate Park on May 27.
Weekend-long Festival at The Forks – The largest Pride gathering always takes place at The Forks throughout the weekend. Starting Saturday (June 3), there will be beer gardens, fun times, and of course, so many great headline acts on the stage including Ami Cheon, Tinge, and the aforementioned Zaki Ibrahim (all on Sunday) and plenty of performances on the Kids Stage including Al Simmons.
Parade & Rally – The big rally and parade, which annually features thousands of participants, takes place on Sunday, June 4. It starts at the Manitoba Legislature for the rally (time TBA), with the parade then moving down Broadway before ending at The Forks where you can continue to take part in all the festivities.
To keep up-to-date on all things Pride Winnipeg, download its new app here on linktree, where you can also find more events, merchandise, and so much more. For more tourism info go to our 2SLGBTQ+ website.