May 21, 2020
ST PETE PRIDE, FLORIDA’S LARGEST PRIDE CELEBRATION, CANCELS JUNE 2020 IN-PERSON EVENTS
St Petersburg, Florida, May 21, 2020 – After careful consideration and thorough exploration of alternatives with the city of St Petersburg, the Board of St Pete Pride has made the difficult decision to cancel all large in-person events originally scheduled for June 22 – 28, 2020. The initial hope was to postpone these events. However, the level of uncertainty and lack of clear guidance from experts prompted the decision to cancel as the Board deemed the health and safety of our community, both near and far, most important.
“While I am saddened by the cancellation of this year’s St Pete Pride, I respect the decision made by the event’s organizers given the inability to plan such events in the face of this unprecedented uncertainty. Our shared focus and most important job is public safety. St Pete Pride certainly recognizes this. St Pete Pride is one of the best and biggest LGBTQ+ events in the nation and will certainly outlast any challenges that come its way. Working with St Pete Pride and other organizations and individuals in our community, we will find ways to celebrate this year’s pride month safely and collectively. I hope that all residents of St. Pete remember that while we may be separated due to COVID-19, we are never alone and that we should continue to embrace and celebrate our LGBTQ residents and allies every day for their efforts in helping the sun to shine so brightly on us here in St. Pete.” – Rick Kriseman, Mayor of St Petersburg
The Board of St Pete Pride sincerely thanks all our community and supporters for their understanding and patience as we diligently work with our community partners and incredible sponsors to come up with alternative ways to celebrate pride as a community, while also respecting the current conditions of the world and everyone’s safety. Additionally, we are committed to the continued development of our Community Grants Program that has allowed us to support numerous invaluable non-profit organizations in the Tampa Bay area.
St Pete Pride appreciates the continued support of our sponsors, parade and festival registrants, and advertisers. Your Pride 2020 sponsorships, registrations, and advertisements will automatically carry forward to June 2021 Pride celebrations.
The leadership of St Pete Pride is laser focused on our mission, our community, and our supporters as we are adapting to our new reality of social distancing during the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. We will continue to be visible through our website, our newsletters, and in the community as we all work together through these difficult times.
For more information or if there are any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. St Pete Pride is a 501(c)(3) organization who produces and manages the largest LGBTQ+ Pride celebration in the State of Florida. In 2018 more than 250,000 people attended St Pete Pride events over the three-day Pride celebration.
April 20, 2020
Due to social distancing measures imposed to slow the spread of COVID-19, St Pete Pride festivities scheduled for June have been postponed from their original dates until Fall 2020. St Pete Pride is actively working with the City of St. Petersburg to secure new dates for the events and will make additional changes to the schedule (as necessary) to move forward with the celebrations.
“We recognize how meaningful our PRIDE celebration is to the LGBTQ community in Tampa Bay. Although we may not be able to physically gather as we normally would this June, our postponement will in no way diminish what it means to be PROUD in St Pete and Tampa Bay! We will still find ways to raise our flags of all colors, celebrate the beauty and vibrancy of our community, and spotlight the issues our movement still faces.” – Chrys Bundy, St Pete Pride Board President
Statements from St. Petersburg Elected Officials:
“St Pete Pride recognizes that there is simply too much uncertainty right now to plan an event that draws such large numbers of people from near and far. I appreciate their thinking ahead, and their eagerness to look ahead to a future date that is in the best interest of public health. Our annual parade and festival is one of the best and biggest in the nation and will certainly outlast any challenges that come its way. In the interim, we should continue to embrace and celebrate our LGBTQ residents and allies each and every day for their efforts in helping the sun to shine so brightly on us here in St. Pete.” – Mayor Rick Kriseman
“While we have seen progress towards “flattening the curve” in St. Petersburg, the need to continue social distancing remains high and mass gatherings are not likely to resume any time soon. I support the difficult decision to postpone this year’s St Pete Pride celebrations. I and many residents and businesses look forward to Pride and it saddens me to see such a unifying and uplifting event delayed. I have faith that our resilient community can continue to promote LGBTQ+ visibility and acceptance all year long and even without a parade. This sadness is temporary and I look forward to being able to celebrate with our community this fall.” – Amy Foster, City Council District 8
“While the postponement of our St Pete Pride celebration is disappointing, I fully support the decision to put health and safety first. We can still stand together in other ways with our LGBTQ+ friends and family to recognize and honor the path that has led to our city’s beautiful diversity. We must remember that the spirit of Pride lives here in St. Petersburg every day – this is who we are.” – Gina L. Driscoll, City Council District 6
“St Pete Pride is a beloved celebration of community and togetherness. In the past 18 years, Pride has become a vital part of the St. Pete story. However, COVID-19 respects no person or tradition. It will not stop until we stop it. I applaud St Pete Pride for making the difficult decision to follow public health advice and postpone Pride Weekend 2020. Pride and the values it represents have never been more important, and I look forward to working with Mayor Kriseman and St Pete Pride to make Pride 2020 the best yet.” – Robert Blackmon, City Council District 1
“I feel a great sadness every time I see yet another St Pete event being canceled or postponed due to COVID-19 and the social distancing practices that we are all living with. I will say however that the postponement of PRIDE really does touch me on a much deeper level. PRIDE is an iconic celebration of equality and love and I cannot think of anything that is more needed in our community right now. However, the safety of our residents and visitors is our paramount focus. I look forward to a time when we can gather again and celebrate all things that make St Petersburg great including PRIDE. Until then we will continue to focus our efforts on supporting local businesses, first responders, front line workers and all who are fighting to get us back to normal. I stand with our LGTBQ+ community and I have faith that soon we will see a day when we can physically come together as one community to unite our hearts and rejoice again.” – Brandi Gabbard, City Council District 2
“The City of St. Petersburg has earned the reputation as a welcoming city. A city that celebrates unity, creativity and the uniqueness of self expression which can be experienced during our highly anticipated St. Pete Pride Festival that celebrates the LGBT community and the diversity that is St. Pete. Although the festivities have been postponed, I applaud the careful consideration for public safety. Thank you for your caution and I look forward to attending the celebration on its new date!” – Deborah D. Figgs-Sanders, City Council District 5
March 18, 2020
The Board of St Pete Pride is continuing to closely monitor the spread of Covid-19 and is planning appropriate precautionary measures to keep the community safe. As of March 18th, Pride Weekend remains on schedule for June 26th – June 28th 2020. However, a final decision on these dates will be made as the event draws closer. Please follow our website and social media channels to stay informed on the latest developments.