Written by Aaron-Michael Fox.
After a two-year hiatus, Huntington’s annual Pride Festival returns to downtown Huntington on Saturday, October 22, 2022.
Pride Festival comes from Huntington Pride, a non-profit organization which hosts social and educational events for the LGBTQ+ community and its allies in the greater Huntington area. The group’s “Open To All” campaign has partnered with numerous local businesses and organizations over the last few years including DowntownHuntington.net.
The Huntington Pride Festival launched its first year in 2019 with plans to make it an annual event. However, the circumstances of the global pandemic put those plans on hold. Pride is back, though, and this year promises to be one of the area’s largest and most popular festivals.
Roughly 5,000 people attended the 2019 Pride Festival, according to the organizers, and this year is expected to be even bigger, drawing people from many miles away.
The festival will take place on the 800 and 900 blocks of 4th Avenue and will feature local live music and drag performers throughout the day from the mainstage. There will also be food trucks and an area for kids’ activities (the festival is family-friendly until 7:30 p.m.).
Presented by the McElroy family, the fun starts at 2 p.m. with DJ Cin City and there will be an official kick-off at 3 p.m. Live local music will start at 4 p.m. headlined by local Huntington supergroup “Bath Bomb,” followed by Alexis Cunningham who was featured on NBC’s “American Song Contest.”
The festival will switch to a more adult theme at 7:30 p.m. with a primetime drag show with Maddelyn Hatter from RuPaul’s Drag Race on VH1. After the official festival concludes, there will be an after-party at The Loud starting at 10:30 p.m. The Loud is located at the corner of 6th Avenue and 8th Street in downtown Huntington.