Six Crowd-Free Ways to Celebrate Gay Pride This Week

By Serena Solomon on June 26, 2014 6:19am 

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 Although the city's official Pride events draw thousands, some prefer a less crowded way to celebrate.
Six Crowd-Free Events for Celebrating Gay Pride
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NEW YORK CITY — If you want to show your pride this week, but can't take the crowds that attend New York City's official Pride Week events, take heart — DNAinfo has compiled a list of the best alternative ways to celebrate.

Far from the city's official Pride events, which are expected to draw thousands of spectators as the official march winds through Chelsea and the West Village on Sunday, there are an assortment of LGBT-centric events elsewhere. 

"It is important to have lots of different ways to celebrate because people are in different places. We should be able to enjoy that, and respect the different ways people celebrate," said Greg Newton, co-owner of Lower East Side bookstore The Bureau of General Services — Queer Division, or BGSQD.

Newton said his bookstore will host a series of readings and performances on Sunday including one from gay writer, actor and director Drae Campbell.

"This is more of an off-the-beaten track event for people who don't want to be surrounded by all the crowds, the hoopla," Newton said.

Here are six events beyond the official Pride schedule where you can celebrate gay pride this week:

Thursday

The Leslie and Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art Show in SoHo

The Leslie and Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art at 26 Wooster St. will be plastering its street-level windows with art from 10 finalists in an annual competition to design a cover for gay magazine Next. The designs will be revealed today and will stay up until July 15.

The museum will also be open throughout the week from noon to 6 p.m. each day showcasing its current exhibition "After Our Bodies Meet." 

"[The exhibition] is 10 queer feminist artists who are expressing positive body imagery," said Jerry Kajpust, the museum's deputy director for external relations.

Friday

Same-Sex Wedding Photo Exhibition in Hell's Kitchen

Photographer Goran Veljic, who specializes in capturing City Hall weddings, is hosting a one-day exhibition on his work with same sex couples tying the knot. Veljic will be there to talk through the images of the dozens of gay and lesbian couples who have hired him to photograph their weddings.

The exhibition will be held at the Gallery MC, 549 52nd St. on the 8th Floor from 6-11 p.m.

Screening of "Before You Know It" in Harlem

The documentary film "Before You Know It" shares the story of three members of the LGBT community who are all older than 55. The film celebrates their many years trailblazing for LGBT rights and their strength in the face of prejudice.

The screening will take place at Maysles Cinema at 343 Lenox Ave. at 7 p.m. There is a suggested donation of $10.

Saturday

The Lesbian Herstory Archives in Park Slope

The Lesbian Herstory Archives is holding its annual open house where visitors can browse the organization's photographs, files, books, videos and audio collections that document identity and the struggle for equality. Visitors can make their own way around the archives or go on a guided tour.

The Lesbian Herstory Archives are at 84 14th St. and will be open from noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday.

Sunday

Middle Collegiate Church in the East Village

The Rev. Jacqui Lewis will be preaching on gay pride during the two Sunday services at 11:15 a.m. and 6 p.m in the Middle Collegiate Church at 112 Second Ave.

"What will be unique to people is they are welcomed in a place that they might not normally feel accepted," Lewis said.

Between services, Lewis as well as other members and staff from the church will be marching in the parade through Chelsea and the West Village.

A Queer Pride Party on the Lower East Side

The aforementioned book shop BGSQD at 83A Hester St. is hosting performances from a handful of gay artists such as comedian and toy designer Kaitlyn Holland and Max Steele, a performer and writer. There is a suggested donation of $5 upon entry into the event. A bar area will have beer, wine and mimosas for $5 a drink.

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