As Pride season is in full swing, the largest and longest running LGBT event in South Carolina is getting ready for their biggest year yet! Famously Hot South Carolina Pride was started with Harriet Hancock, a small crowd, and a clipboard asking people to march down Columbia’s Main Street in a gay march almost 3 decades ago. Today, there are over 55,000 calculated attendees in the celebration. As the festival is gearing up on their 28th anniversary, they have big plans.
August 12th, Famously Hot South Carolina Pride held their annual President’s Ball with their host, Emmy winning television star, celebrity stylist, fashion design, and author of his new book, Does this book make my butt look Big, Carson Kersley. During the event, Carson told jokes and even gave some insights on the upcoming season of RuPaul’s Drag Race. After Carson riled laughs and applause, the President of Famously Hot South Carolina Pride, Jeff March took the stage and announced the plans for the 2017 festival.
During Pride week, you can enjoy events at the South Carolina State Fair, an LGBTQ Film Festival, Picnics, and so much more! However, during the weekend more crowds will pile into Columbia to see the biggest events of this season.
To allow a longer, bigger, and more fabulous LGBT celebration in South Carolina, the festival will begin on Friday October 20th, and for the first time will have a nighttime parade to kick off the Pride weekend. The Light It Up Parade will begin at 7pm and will march down to end at South Carolina’s Main Street where it will kick off the first ever Street Dance Party after the nighttime parade at 9pm. The street dance will be Dj’ed by RuPaul’s Drag Racer Mimi Imfurst, and will headline a free concert by The Queen of Rap legend, Lil Kim!!! **Please note: This event is rated R for Mature audiences**
Be sure to rest up, because the following day, the party will continue on the Smirnoff Main Stage Entertainment from 12-7pm as Jody Watley, Betty Who, Debby Holiday, Sabrina Johnston, and Alissah Brooks take the stage.
It wouldn’t be a party without queens! RuPaul’s DragRace’s Phoenix is back for the 5th time to SC Pride, and she’s bringing stars to the Palmetto state! Coming with her will be Detox, Latrice Royale, Trinity Taylor, and Kennedy Davenport. Some local entertainment will also include Paris Lefaris.
After the street party, join SC Pride for their official after party at Main Street Public House, where Mimi Imfust will DJ the night away with all your new friends you’ll meet at Pride, as well as the full lineup of RuPaul’s Drag Race stars. (This event has a cover charge of $15 at the gate).
2017 is shaping up to be a great year for SC Pride, but the March to 30 years is on! Famously Hot South Carolina Pride is starting to planning for the 2019 festival and they need YOUR help! For their 30th anniversary, they need help deciding who will come back for the celebration, therefore they will have ballots at all of the events and YOU will get to choose who you want to see in 2019!
Visit Famously Hot South Carolina Pride at www.scpride.org for more event info, hotels, and to Get your VIP Lounge Pride Pass.
Facebook and Instagram at @famouslyhotscpride
Pictures and Words by Jonatan Ramirez