Arguably no large city in New York State outside of New York City itself, Rochester is a vibrant destination for arts and music, a progressive academic city, and a great base for exploring the shoreline of Lake Ontario and the sophisticated inns, restaurants, and wineries of the nearby Finger Lakes region. In mid-July, this city of 211,000 hosts Rochester Gay Pride, which is produced by the Gay Alliance of the Genesee Valley. The dates this year are July 19 through July 21, 2013, but there are a number of related events taking place during the week leading up to Pride.
More on Rochester Pride 2013 will be posted here as information becomes available - here's a look at last year's event, in the meantime:
For a full list of Rochester Pride parties and events, consult the official Pride schedule - the festivities commence on Friday a week before the festival with a flag-raising at City Hall and continue all week with a Gay Day at SeaBreeze Amusement Park on Saturday; a night of revelry in the cool South Wedge neighborhood on Friday; along with movie nights and other parties.
On the following Friday, there's a Rochester Pride Power Mixer at Pride's official host hotel, the Holiday Inn Airport, at 911 Brooks Avenue, from 7 until 10 pm.
The following day, Saturday, is the time for the Rochester Gay Pride Parade, held from 3:30 pm until 5 and running along Park Avenue (the procession begins at Park Avenue and Brunswick). (Here's a map of the parade route). The parade is preceded by a Rochester Family Pride Picnic, from 1:30 to 3:30 at the Rochester Museum & Science Center. And it's followed by one of the top events of the weekend, the Rochester Gay Pride Festival, held from 4:30 until 9:30 pm behind the Auditorium Theater on College Avenue. In addition to vendors and food, the festival will present entertainment by headliner Jessica Sutta, formerly of the Pussycat Dolls.
Additionally, gay-popular bars, restaurants, hotels, and shops in the area have more going on than usual during Pride week. Check online resources about the Rochester gay scene, such as the Empty Closet gay newspaper, which is one of the longest-running such publications in the country. Also take a look at the excellent gay travel site produced by the city's official tourism organization, Visit Rochester.