By Julia Rocca Virnelli and Shara Levine
June is Pride Month, celebrating the LGBTQ+ community and recognizing the challenges they face.
Across Long Island, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and other queer and gender non-conforming folks and their allies will march in parades and attend events to commemorate Pride Month, which originated to honor the Stonewall Riots of 1969, when LGBTQ patrons of Manhattan’s Stonewall Inn fought back against police who launched one of its many discriminatory raids on the gay bar, marking a turning point in the movement for equality.
Here is a list of Pride Month events on Long Island for both children and adults to enjoy and to learn more about LGBTQ+ issues.
stART (Story + Art): ‘Rainbow: A First Book of Pride’
Welcome Pride Month with this sweet ode to rainbow families and an affirming display of a parent’s love for their child and a child’s love for their parents, then create your own colorful rainbow flag! Long Island Children’s Museum, 11 Davis Ave., Garden City. $4; $3 members plus admission: $14; $13 ages 65 and older. 11:30 a.m.-12 p.m. June 2.
Pride 5K Run/Walk
Junior Women’s Club of Bellrose will host its second annual Pride 5k Run/Walk & Kids Fun Run. There will be a DJ, raffle baskets, and giveaways for participants! Proceeds from the race go towards Pride For Youth, a division of Long Island Crisis Center. Bellerose Village, $5-$25. 9:30 a.m. June 5.
AdvoKids: Pride Month
Learn about the advocate Edith Windsor who fought for the rights of herself and her lifelong partner which largely led to the recognition of same-sex marriages. Visitors will then create an inclusion rainbow using pieces of tissue paper. Long Island Children’s Museum, 11 Davis Ave., Garden City. Included with admission: $15, free for members. 1-3 p.m. June 5.
Babylon Village Car Pride Parade and Celebration
After great success last year, Babylon Village will host its third annual Pride Day Celebration. Community members are invited to decorate their cars to participate in the car parade, along with other floats and local entries! Babylon Village will close down the street to allow participants to enjoy food and drinks from local establishments. Deer Park Avenue, Babylon, Free. 1-6 p.m. June 5.
Pride Month: Art Class
Using a unique combination of black, white, and primary colors, Keith Haring created a visual language with his street art, sculptures, and paintings. Now is your chance to create your own Keith Haring-inspired work of art. Connetquot River State Park Preserve, Sunrise Highway, Bohemia. $4, Advanced registration required. 7-8:30 p.m. June 10.
Pride in Nature
Learn about rainbows, prisms, light refraction, different species that break gender norms, create chalk art, and make friendship bracelets. Jones Beach Energy & Nature Center, 150 Bay Parkway, Wantagh. Free. 9 a.m.-12 p.m. June 11.
Long Island Pride
Long Island Pride Festival will feature a parade, concert, and festival, with the opportunity for local businesses to participate. The event is fully in-person this year, and organizers are excited to finally celebrate with all of the community. Village of Farmingdale, $50. 12-6 p.m. June 12.
Pride After Dark 2022
This year, Pride After Dark will be in-person and feature celebrity drag performances, music, food, and prizes, as well as the opportunity to register for free HIV testing. This event is free and open to LGBT folks ages 13-30. HOF USA Building, Hofstra University, Free. 6-11 p.m. June 16.
Pride Month: Rainbow Lantern Walk
Have you ever wanted to explore the park after dark? Now is your chance! Take a night-themed walk with the ambiance of rainbow-colored lanterns! Sunken Meadow State Park, 25A and Sunken Meadow Parkway, Kings Park. $4, Advanced registration required. 8-9:30 p.m. June 17.
Drag Queen Story Hour with Bella Noche
Join the museum for a fabulous afternoon of stories, games, and crafting. Children’s Museum of the East End, 376 Bridgehampton-Sag Harbor Tpke., Bridgehampton. Included with admission, $19. 12-2 p.m. June 18.
BTW is a bar and grill located in Oceanside, dedicated to creating an open space for the LGBT community. Throughout the month of June, they are holding pride events and raising money for local organizations. On June 18, DJ JoJo Ciara will perform, with all proceeds benefiting Pride For Youth. On June 23, BTW will host A Drag Show fundraiser benefiting Project Safety Net New York. Long Beach Road, Oceanside, $5-$10. 7:30 p.m. June 18 & 8 p.m. June 23.
Pride Month: Color Connection- Family Program
Have you ever heard of ROY G BIV? You’ll certainly be an expert by the end of this program, filled with hands-on activities that will help us explore the many ways that light bounces, bends, and reflects. Connetquot River State Park Preserve, Sunrise Highway, Bohemia. $4, Advanced registration required. 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m. June 25.
For more guides about things to do on Long Island, visit longislandpress.com/category/everything-long-island.