LGBTQIA+ Events and Venues
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LGBTQIA+ Events and Venues

Pride month is typically celebrated in June, but Austin celebrates in August. No matter what month it is, we’ve got you covered with these LGBTQIA+ events and venues.

Each year, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation releases an index of how different cities score in a variety of categories that indicate how queer-friendly a city is. Austin, historically, has received scores of 100, which is the highest possible score. Check out some of the events and places that play a part in celebrating LGBTQIA+ culture.

 

LGBTQIA+ Events in Austin

 

Pride Celebration Extravaganza

August 5

The Pride Celebration Extravaganza kicks off Pride Week with a blend of Flow Yoga and community camaraderie. Attendees are invited to move, groove, and celebrate love at the Flow Yoga Pride Extravaganza. Standing strong for LOVE, symbolized by the Tadasana, or mountain pose, participants eagerly anticipate a joyous celebration. What’s even better, all proceeds from the event will go towards supporting a charitable cause, making each person’s contribution even more meaningful.

 

ATX Pride Market

August 6

Celebrate Pride beyond June at the second-annual ATX Pride Market, hosted by The Little Gay Shop on August 6th, from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm CDT at Distribution Hall, 1500 East 4th Street, Austin, TX. With 70+ local artists and makers, this vibrant market promises a queer kickoff to Austin Pride Month. Shop for unique creations, indulge in delicious food and drinks, and join in the festive spirit of Pride that lasts 24/7/365. Don’t miss this opportunity to support local talent and embrace the ongoing celebration of love and acceptance at the ATX Pride Market!

 

Austin Pride Rainbow Skate

August 7

Join in the excitement as Austin Pride takes over the Playland Skate Center on Monday, August 7th, for the Pride Week Edition of Rainbow Skate! Geared towards the LGBTQ+ community, this event promises a blast with skating and DJ Chorizo Funk setting the perfect vibe. Embracing the theme “KEEP AUSTIN QUEER’D,” come as you are, let your flags fly high, and celebrate with pride. All ages are welcome with tickets priced at $14.00 per person, including roller skate rental. Remember, each attendee must purchase a ticket, and no outside food/drinks are allowed. Get ready for an unforgettable night of unity, acceptance, and fun at Rainbow Skate!

 

Austin Pride Parade & Festival

August 12

Get ready to celebrate love and diversity on August 12th as Austin Pride takes center stage once again. After a record-breaking attendance of over 400,000 proud individuals in 2022, this year’s event promises to be even grander! Austin Pride never fails to deliver incredible entertainment, and this year is certainly no exception. Embracing the theme “Keep Austin Queer’d,” the festivities will honor and uplift the LGBTQ+ community in all its vibrant glory. With a day filled with performances and an electrifying atmosphere, Pride in Austin is a time to come together, stand tall, and revel in the powerful spirit of inclusivity and acceptance. Be prepared to join the joyous throngs as Austin embraces its queer identity and showcases the city’s unwavering pride!

 

Electric Rainbow – Austin PRIDE Neon Party

August 12

This event promises to ignite their senses and leave guests glowing with excitement. Whether one is a lover of all things bright and bold or seeking a unique and captivating experience, Electric Rainbow™ offers an inclusive atmosphere to celebrate love, diversity, and self-expression. Embrace the electrifying music, mind-blowing art, and captivating performances in this night of joy and acceptance. The dedicated glow art station allows for the unleashing of creativity with neon colors and light, creating one’s own glowing masterpieces. Capture the essence of the night with friends in memorable photos, cherishing lasting memories from this dazzling celebration of love and acceptance. Get ready to dance, glow, and revel in the most extraordinary event of the year at Electric Rainbow™!

 

PRIDE Pool Party w/ International DJ, Alex Acosta

August 13

Don’t miss the PRIDE Pool Party at the brand new Thompson Hotel, Austin TX, during Pride Weekend! Join hundreds of new friends on the Wax Myrtle rooftop pool deck for an unforgettable experience with international DJ Alex Acosta setting the beats. Enjoy the stunning skyline backdrop while floating in the crystal-clear pool, sipping refreshing cocktails, and celebrating with Austin’s welcoming LGBTQ+ community. This official Equality Alliance pool party event promises fabulous entertainment, dazzling performances, and a spirit of love, acceptance, and unity. Be sure to secure your spot early, as tickets sell out quickly. Your ticket purchase directly benefits local organizations such as Equality Texas, OutYouth, Kind Clinic, and Allgo. Join us for an incredible Pride Pool Party you won’t forget at the Thompson Hotel!

 

Drag Pride Recovery Brunch

August 13

Fairmont Austin’s Rules & Regs is excited to bring back their popular Drag Brunch series in partnership with Extragrams. Experience the glitz and glamour of these lively bimonthly brunches, complemented by the city’s best skyline views. Join the Austin Pride festivities with the Sunday August Pride Recovery Brunch, an invigorating 21+ event, featuring fabulous Drag Brunch performances starting at 1:00 pm, right after the Austin Pride Parade. Indulge in Rules & Regs’ brunch favorites and delightful cocktails, including the option to build your own Bloody Marys.

 

Uncanny Attractions: Drag and Dropkicks

August 19

Don’t miss the latest edition of Drags & Dropkicks at Highland Lounge, presented by Uncanny Attractions! In the heart of Texas, during Austin’s Pride celebration in August, this show promises to be even more exuberant and inclusive. Combining pro wrestling with drag, it’s a unique and empowering event that celebrates and uplifts kings, queens, and in-betweens. Join in this joyous celebration of love, acceptance, and solidarity as wrestling meets drag in an unforgettable show!

 

Local Queer End of Summer Pride Boat Party

August 26

In the grand finale of an incredibly hot queer summer, the Local Queer End of Summer Pride Boat Party invites all she’s, they’s, and gay’s to join in the celebration! This 21+ event requires attendees to bring their own alcohol, and IDs will be checked before boarding the party barge for four hours of non-stop fun. Water bottles, fruit, and VIP entry to the after-party at Cheer Up Charlie’s are included. Guests are encouraged to bring their own drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic), food, and swimming items for a fantastic time. Essentials such as sunscreen, sunglasses, towels, and IDs should not be forgotten. It’s time to wrap up the season in style and enjoy the ultimate summer send-off at the Local Queer End of Summer Pride Boat Party!

 

The Best Gay Bars in Austin:

 

According to a recent Austin LGBTQIA+ quality of life study, “Austin has a rich history of queer community life and activism, including its first documented gay bar –The Manhattan Club–which opened in 1958, and the formation of the Austin Lesbian Organization in the 1970s. It’s important to note that bars have historically been the primary place where LGBTQIA+ people socialize.”

 

Cheer Up Charlies

This popular spot describes itself as a the bar where everyone is welcome. It’s a vegan bar that has kombucha on tap, fresh juice cocktails, local beers, and biodynamic wines. While the idea of a bar might invoke the idea of partying late into the night, and that certainly is a possibility here, it’s also a great place to hang out on the patio with a drink in hand and enjoy the afternoon sun. They’re open Thursday through Sunday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m., and they have a happy hour from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. with rotating drink specials. Aside from grabbing a drink, you can join in on a dance party, listen to live music, and appreciate art.

 

Oilcan Harry’s
Austin’s oldest gay bar (that’s still in operation) has been serving Austin for more than 30 years. Oilcan Harry’s is owned and operated by members of the gay community, and the spot is known for having a boisterous dance scene, theme nights, drag shows, and special events. They’re also open 7 days a week!

 

Rain on 4th

A good rule of thumb if you are trying to find gay bars in Austin is to head to 4th street. This gay club is known for having an upscale lounge-type atmosphere and is generally referred to simply as Rain. Their food and drink menu offers more than the average bar, with paninis from Royal Blue Grocery and a unique array of cocktails. Here you can dance the night away to a variety of DJs, battle it out in a karaoke competition, watch a drag show, and even play bingo.

 

The Iron Bear

In the gay community, bears are a subset of traditionally larger, cuddly, or buff and typically hairy guys that embrace rugged masculinity. This Austin gay bar and grill is owned by bears and was founded as a spot where bears and their admirers could come together in friendship and brotherhood. That said, The Iron Bear is open and welcoming to everyone! A major draw is that they serve great food. Their kitchen is open until 10 p.m. and features messy smash burgers, wings, gourmet hot dogs, and more. They also have poker nights, drag nights, DJs, and cold beer.

 

Barbarella

Lovingly known as Barbs, this hopping destination is one of the best gay bars in Austin. Located in Downtown Austin, they’re billed as a dance club for people who don’t like dance clubs. Open to everyone and popular for people who want an unpretentious place to bust a move, Barbarella has theme nights, DJs, and multiple dance floors. It consistently wins in the Austin Chronicle’s best place to dance category. A popular night at Barbarella is Tuesday because every week they host Tuezgayz, a music and dance-filled night. If it is your first time going, keep in mind that this place can get pretty loud and crowded, but that’s part of the appeal.

 

Highland Lounge

As the largest gay club in Austin, the Highland Lounge is full of high energy. It opened in 2014, and it has three levels, six bars, and a giant dance floor. They have a variety of events like Hip Hop + Latin Night, karaoke nights, and drag shows.

 

Coconut Club
A beachy nightclub founded by two former Cheer Up Charlies employees, the Coconut Club is tropical-themed and has a rooftop that’s perfect for hanging out and enjoying the ambiance of downtown. Though it has struggled, closed, and reopened throughout the pandemic, it is currently still ready for you to dance and enjoy.

Realty Austin
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