Love is Love: NW Philly prepares for Pride


Northwest Philadelphia is gearing up for Pride Month, which starts on Saturday, with a calendar full of activities recognizing that love is love.

Tomorrow, the Bearded Ladies Cabaret will be getting a head start – and kicking off its citywide programming for the month at Allens Lane Art Center with a special outdoor performance of "CHECK IT OUT!!!" on May 31 from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

In collaboration with hip-hop collective ILL DOOTS and songcatcher Sam Rise, the show features Loretta the Lowly Bookworm, who doesn't fit in anywhere and just wants a place to be herself. Mo the Librarian and friends introduce Loretta to the magical world of the library through original songs, stories, drag, glitter, and joy! This performance celebrates Philly's libraries as places of freedom for all families and is recommended for bookworms aged 5-10 of all orientations, genders, and genres. Kid-friendly activities in the park start at 3 p.m., including a book giveaway, food trucks, and an art-themed scavenger hunt, with the show beginning at 4 p.m. The event is pay-what-you-wish and open to all.

But that's just the start. Our local communities are hosting a series of observances for Pride Month, including a tour, library events, book discussions, religious services, and a special farmers market.

Here's a preview of a few ways to celebrate Pride:

"Be You" Pride March and Festival

This year's Philadelphia march in Center City is an open invitation to the LGBTQ+ community and allies, with no registration needed. The march – with no vehicles or floats -  will start at 10:30 a.m., June 2, at 6th and Walnut in Old City and end in the Gayborhood (around 13th and Locust), the site of the festival, which is from noon to 7 p.m. Look for the largest rainbow Pride flag in America, this year expanded to 400 feet, along with small businesses and organizations, stages with local performers, entertainers, artists, vendors, food trucks, community organizations, and local bars. For information, visit

Pride in the Park

The Germantown Farmers Market celebrates Pride Month, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., June 1, with vendors including artists Seamone Farries and Jazmyn Jamil, Feast Jewelry, tattoo artist Marria Gittens, This & That, Bad Mother Shuckers Food Truck, the Farm at Wyncote, P.S. & Co. (an organic, vegan, gluten-free restaurant and bakery), and Historic Germantown. The farmers market is at 5501 Germantown Ave.

Out of the Closet and into the Crypt

Most Laurel Hill East Cemetery residents lived at a time when it was illegal and/or unsafe to be out as an LGBTQ+ person.  Sexual orientation was not mentioned in obituaries, or in cemetery records.  Nonetheless, Laurel Hill East has always had queer residents. Meet some of them, on a tour from 1 to 3 p.m., Saturday, June 1. Tickets are $15 to $17. The cemetery is at 3822 Ridge Ave. For information, visit

Library Pride

Libraries around the region will celebrate with special storytimes, including a Pride Month storytime at 10:30 a.m. June 1 at Lovett Memorial Library in Mt. Airy. The event will also feature crafting activities. Lovett is at 6945 Germantown Ave.

Best practices

Jeanes Library will kick off Pride Month at 6:30 p.m., June 6, with a workshop on LGBTQ+ identities and best practices. The workshop will include information on basic terminology and the relationships between sex, gender, sexual orientation, and gender expression. Workshop leaders will discuss best practices for working with LGBTQ community members and give participants tools to create welcoming and affirming environments. The library is at 4051 Joshua Road, Lafayette Hill. For information, visit

What It takes to heal

Writer, therapist and political organizer Prentis Hemphill, who served as healing justice coordinator of Black Lives Matter Global Network, will chat with bestselling author Cole Arthur Riley at 7 p.m. June 7, in a discussion about Hemphill's new book "What It Takes To Heal: How Transforming Ourselves Can Change the World," which asserts that principles of embodiment (the recognition of the body's sensations and habits, and the beliefs that inform them) are critical to lasting healing and change. The discussion and book signing is at First United Methodist Church of Germantown, 6001 Germantown Ave. Tickets are $6.50 to $32, with the $32 tickets including a copy of the book. For information, visit

Pride Shabbat

Germantown Jewish Center hosts a Pride Shabbat on June 7 featuring Pride swag, a photo booth, face painting, a musical service and drag show, and dinner. On Saturday, June 8, celebrate community through liturgy, prayer, and a special D'var Torah from Councilmember Rue Landau, followed by a light lunch. For information, visit