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10 Things You Have to Do at Atlanta Pride This Month

10 Things You Have to Do at Atlanta Pride This Month

10 Things You Have to Do at Atlanta Pride This Month
BadAlexCheves

You’ve been to the big Pride festivals – New York, San Francisco – but have you been to Atlanta’s? As a Georgia native, I admit: it’s positioned at a weird time. Most Prides fall in June, while Atlanta’s is in October. But trust me, this is a good thing. October in the South is not October elsewhere. Tank tops are fine, and you’ll still sweat.

Some might be surprised to find that Atlanta boasts a thriving and diverse LGBT community. There are so many things to do there, and after going to Pride for years, here is my top ten list of things you have to do this year.

1. Go to the Atlanta Pride Parade.

It’s the largest parade in Atlanta and draws tens of thousands of spectators every year. The parade runs downtown through the gay intersection – 10th Street and Piedmont Ave – and ends at Piedmont Park, where there is usually a Pride “marketplace.” This year’s parade happens on October 11 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

2. Try soda from all over the world at the World of Coca-Cola.

The Coca-Cola company started in Atlanta, and many die-hard Coke fans believe the secret formula is still in the city. The World of Coke, located next door to the Georgia Aquarium, is an interactive museum about the history of Coca-Cola and its hundreds of different products (did you know that Dasani, Minute Maid, and a drink called Mickey’s Adventures are all owned by the Coca-Cola company?)

The best part is the tasting room, where you can try Coca-Cola products from all over the world – as much as you like.

3. Visit the Georgia Aquarium.

The Georgia Aquarium held the title of “world’s largest aquarium” until Ocean Kingdom on Hengqin Island near Macau, China opened in 2014. It’s the largest aquarium in the United States – check out the Beluga whales!

4. Meet hot leather bears at Heretic.

The Heretic is a long-standing leather bar that becomes a den packed with hot, sweaty muscle bears every Atlanta Pride. And super sexy Atlanta-based DJ Neon the GlowGoBear (above) is known to make regular appearances there. It’s also located right next door to Xion, which brings me to my next point….

5. Get dirty at Xion.

Xion goes on till seven in the morning and is located either within walking distance or a very short Uber ride from all Atlanta's gay clubs. On Pride weekend, the party doesn’t stop when the bars close, and Xion is hookup central. If you're looking for a sleazy, dance-y cruising ground, Xion is the place to be. 

6. Walk through Piedmont Park.

It’s Atlanta’s biggest and most beautiful park, and every Pride there’s a concert. Meghan Trainor performed in the park last year.

7. Get breakfast at The Flying Biscuit.

One of Atlanta's growing micro-chain restaurants, The Flying Biscuit's oldest location is at the intersection of 10th Street and Piedmont Avenue, right in the heart of Atlanta's gayborhood.

There is usually a crowd outside, so get there early or be prepared to wait. The biscuits are good, but the Coca-Cola chicken is amazing.

8. Don’t ever say “Hot-Lanta.”

This is a photo of Violet Chachki.

Violet Chachki put it best on the first episode of last year’s RuPaul: “Nobody really says that.”

9. See the wildlife at Jungle.

Jungle is the biggest gay dance club in the city. On Pride weekend, it becomes a sweaty, standing-room-only skin fest. Also, Detox has been known to make appearances.

10.  Get weird at The Other Show.

The Legendary Children is Atlanta’s premier off-kilter, avant-garde, post-drag drag troupe – the same house from which Violet Chachki hails (and who sometimes does aerial performances at The Other Show, as can be seen above).

Members of the house perform regularly at The Other Show, which happens every Friday night at Jungle. Some performances at The Other Show have become the stuff of drag legend, like this killer creepshow from Evah Destruction.

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

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Alexander Cheves