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Thousands attend Palm Springs’ ‘Big Gay Barbecue’ Pride celebration

Greater Palm Springs Pride is celebrating Pride Month with the second annual "Big Gay Barbecue."

The two day event is taking place at the Arenas District in Palm Springs, and event organizers are anticipating more than 10,000 attendees Friday and Saturday.

"We started the 'Big Gay Barbecue' as a fundraiser to help keep our November pride events free and accessible for everybody," said Greater Palm Springs Pride President, Ron deHarte.

The 'Big Gay Barbecue' is an annual block party that features music, performers, drinks and plenty of barbecue. 

"We're very excited, we're roasting of course, but so is the food," said 'Big Gay Barbecue' attendee Kevin. "We're having a great time."

Many attendees agree, the spirit of pride is alive and well 365 days a year in Palm Springs. 

"We're ourselves all the time," said Palm Springs resident, Oscar Uvillys. "I think that it's important for you to be true to yourself, and then after that share who are with the world, and that's where we find that richness and diversity."

Some attendees also shared they prefer attending pride celebrations in Palm Springs over larger cities because they’re less commercial. 

"It's more intimate here. It's nicer, smaller, it's more fun," said Steve Knise, who was visiting from Los Angeles.

Though Palm Springs fosters a community of acceptance attendees like Cathedral City resident, Ryan Allen say there are still improvements that can be made. 

"Your voice matters. We get complacent when we're in a blue state, and it may not be blue that long. So make sure that your voice is heard. Support people that you love in your community and make a difference in that community itself," said Allen.

In preparation for pride several agencies, including the F.B.I have issued warnings for people to stay alert during the month of June and be mindful of potential attacks targeting the LGBTQ community. 

"The police department is coordinating with City Hall, our special events team, planning team, all our departments and external law enforcement agencies to make sure that everything goes smooth. We're as protected as we possibly can be," said deHarte.

This year’s ‘Big Gay Barbecue’ is different from last year’s because it spans two days instead of one. 

You can find more information HERE.

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Bianca Ventura

Bianca Ventura joined KESQ News Channel 3 as a reporter in February 2022.


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