Seattle’s 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide

June 11, 2012 6:05 AM

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prideparade Seattles 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide

(credit: Thinkstock)

When the Pacific Northwest does pride, it does it up right, and that’s never truer than when the Seattle Pride Festival and the Seattle Pride Parade take over the entire month. While the fest runs from June 23 to 24, its related celebrations last all month. More than 350,000 people attended in 2011, and more are expected at this year’s celebration. Expect everything from doggie drag competitions to Pride Idol to peaceful, supportive picnics.

With the enormous crowd expected, the wisest choice would be to use the metro transit system on pride weekend. If you need to drive, there are metered street spots and paid parking lots throughout the parade route and near the Seattle Center. The closest Westlake Center location is the parking garage located between fourth and fifth on Olive Way that charges $4 for half an hour to $22 for seven or more hours. Saturdays and Sundays offer a reduced $7 daily rate.

prideidol Seattles 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide

(credit: Seattle Out & Proud/Facebook)

Pride Idol Contest
Neighbours Seattle 
1509 Broadway
Seattle, WA 98122
(206) 324-5358

Hours: June 10 – 8 p.m.
Price: $10 to enter

Seattle’s Pride Idol is citywide contest held every Sunday night through June 3 with each weekly winner earning a $100 prize, and a finale June 10. Along with the title of Seattle’s 2012 Pride Idol, the grand prizewinner earns $1,000 and performs aboard the Seattle Out and Proud float during the Pride Parade. Second place will score $200 while third place will take home $100.

picnicbasket Seattles 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide

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Seattle Pride Picnic 
Volunteer Park
1428 31st Ave. South
Seattle, WA 98112
(206) 324-3899

Hours: June 16 – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Prices: $1 per person

Get together with family and friends at the Seattle Pride Picnic in Volunteer Park for a family friendly display of LGBT support and pride. The  annual event, presented by BECU, gives everyone an opportunity to visit while enjoying lunch together. The buffet picnic, which is catered by, includes hamburgers, veggie burgers, hot dogs, veggie dogs, salads, fresh fruit and beverages, all for just $1 per person.

seattlefrontrunners Seattles 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide


Run and Walk With Pride 
Seward Park
5895 Lake Washington Blvd. South
Seattle, WA  98118

Hours: June 17 – 10 a.m.
Price: $25 adults/$15 children and student

The 2012 Run and Walk with Pride will begin at Seward Park, and includes 10K and 4K runs, and a 4K walk with proceeds going to the It Gets Better Project’s GLSEN WA. The races welcome all abilities and ages, and everyone receives an official T-shirt. Prizes are awarded for the best times, and raffle entries go to all finishers. Registration closes at midnight Friday, June 15.

Related: Seattle’s Best Gay And Lesbian Bars

prideflag Seattles 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide

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Seattle Pride Festival and Pridefest
Seattle Center 
321 Mercer St.
Seattle, WA 98109
(206) 684-7200

Dates: June 23 to June 24
Price: free

The largest LGBTQ party in the Northwest is held over two days at the Seattle Center, featuring four stages of music and entertainment. The Seattle Pride Feast, an all-day foodie event, immediately follows the Downtown Pride Parade June 24. Activities include hundreds of vendor booths, family and children’s areas, food, beer gardens, a variety of artists, women and men’s parties, and a doggie drag costume contest.

Seattle Pride Parade 
Downtown Seattle
Parade begins at the corner of Union Street and 4th Avenue
Seattle, WA 98109

Hours: June 24 – 11 a.m.
Prices: free

The 2012 Seattle Pride Parade theme is The Many Faces of Pride, acknowledging the diversity within Seattle LGBTQ community. Judges will be awarding prizes for the best parade costumes: $500 for first, $250 for second and $100 for third place. The 38th annual parade is scheduled to last roughly 2.5 hours and is held rain or shine. ADA viewing areas are located at Westlake Plaza and on the east side of 4th Avenue and Bell Streets. ASL interpreters are available at both the Westlake Park and 4th and Bell street announcer stages.


thegaslightinn Seattles 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide

(credit: The Gaslight Inn/Facebook)

Gaslight Inn
1727 15th Ave.
Seattle, WA 98122
(206) 325-3654

Price: from $98 to $158

The elegant Gaslight Inn offers a common living room and a library for relaxing away from the busy weekend, or enjoy a dip in the heated pool before dropping off to sleep in one of its four large rooms. Free WiFi and a continental breakfast are included with your stay, with fresh fruit, scones, croissants, juice and coffee. The inn is located on the bus route for easy access to all of the pride events.

Maxwell Hotel
300 Roy St.
Seattle, WA, 98109
(206) 286-0629

Price: from $175.20 to $229

Conveniently located adjacent to the Seattle Center, the Maxwell Hotel features pillow-top beds, a microwave oven with a welcoming packet of popcorn, a mini refrigerator and a 42-inch TV in every room. Guests have access to the hotel’s large indoor swimming pool, state-of-the-art fitness equipment as well as complimentary bicycles.


thegrillonbroadway Seattles 2012 Pride Festival and Parade Guide


Grill on Broadway
314 Broadway East
Seattle, WA 98102
(206) 328-7000

With its large menu and accommodating prices, the Grill on Broadway is a great choice to grab a bite after the pride parade. If the weather is nice, opt for the outdoor seating, which is great location for people watching, especially during this huge weekend event. Check its calendar for fun events throughout the week to mix it up a bit.

Charlie’s Bar and Grill
217 Broadway East
Seattle, WA 98102
(206) 323-2535

Housed in a historical Seattle building, Charlie’s has been serving the area for more than 30 years. Its dark wood and stained glass décor includes a crazy backgammon table in the bar and pool tables in the back. The place is known for its pepper soup as well as an amazing Sunday brunch. Charlie’s everyday menu consists of comfort foods, burgers, pastas, salads and happy hour snacks.

Related: Guide to Puget Sound’s Summer Outdoor Concerts

Check out CBS Local’s Guide to Celebrating Seattle Pride

Kristy Stevens-Young is a freelance writer in Seattle. Her work can be found at

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