Save the date, mga accla! Check out the vibrant and empowering Pride marches and festivals in the Philippines that promote inclusivity and equal rights for all.
Some people make things happen. Some watch things happen. And then some wonder what’s happening. It’s 2023—and hopefully, you’re not part of the latter. It’s about time that we embrace our diversity and be the voice of those who are still restrained from exercising their rights—to be themselves and express themselves.
Human rights encompass the fundamental rights and freedom of every individual, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Participating in activities that support the LGBTQIA+ community, like the Pride Month March, and advocating for equal treatment and non-discrimination contribute to the broader movement for a more inclusive and just society.
From Manila to CDO, Here Are the Pride Marches and Activities You Can Participate in this June
This year, Metro Manila Pride—the largest LGBTQIA+ organization in Southeast Asia—will once again hold its annual Pride March and Festival with the theme: “Tayo Ang Kulayaan: Samot-saring Lakas, Sama-sama sa Landas.”
As recorded in history, the first Pride March happened in 1994 and was attended by hundreds of people, but it has grown in significant numbers through the years. In 2018, Metro Manila Pride gathered an estimated 25,000 people in attendance at the Marikina Sports Complex. And then last year, the first in-person event post-pandemic was attended by almost 30,000 individuals at the Cultural Center of the Philippines Open Grounds.
This June 24, the annual event will be held in Circuit Makati with numerous programs to participate in before the most-anticipated day—including the Kwiz Nite at FFTG Café (June 3), SKL Discussion Spaces Online (June 7), MMPride Community Meeting (June 11), Pride Picnic x Pride Speaks (June 18), and the TAYO and KULAYAAN Pride March & Festival. You may register here for free.
If you’re not near the area, here are other venues that spearhead Pride Month activities that you can join:
LoveLaban (Quezon City Memorial Circle)
Organized by Pride PH, the Quezon City Government is spearheading an all-day event on June 24 featuring the Pride Expo, Pride March, and Pride Night. The whole-day event will be attended by Sassa Gurl, Nica Del Rosario, AC Soriano, and drag queens Precious Paula Nicole, Naia, Lady Morgana, Minty Fresh, Maria Christina, and Pura Luka Vega, to name a few.
Geared towards empowering the Filipino LGBTQIA+ community by creating spaces where diversity is celebrated, stories are respected, and rights are recognized, Mayor Joy Belmonte highlighted that: “More than a celebration, the Pride Festival is a call to end the discrimination, hate, and prejudice among members of the LGBTQIA+. We are holding this activity not because this sector is seeking special treatment. Rather, what they long for is simply a halt to the underserved ill-treatment and denial of opportunities they continue to suffer from.”
Panagbeki (Baguio City)
Even in the Cordillera, the spirit of Pride Month lives on. The Northern Luzon Pride of the Philippines also prepared a lineup of activities that culminates in Panagbeki at the Smoke and Barrel located at Summer Pines Residences, Palipis-Aspiras Highway, Baguio City.
For only P350 for pre-sale and P500 for walk-ins (inclusive of one beer), participants can enjoy a night of dancing, lipsync smackdown, drag show, runaway eleganza, and eventful DJ sets.
Cebu Pride Festival (Cebu)
Cebu is the Queen City for a reason. This year, amplifying the contributions of the LGBTQIA+ community in the province, several events are held simultaneously to promote love, acceptance, and human rights for all. This includes the Cebu City Pride March, headed by the Cebu City Anti-Discrimination Commission.
There’s also the Proud and Loud at Censored Bar held on June 17 and the Cebu Pride Festival: A Culmination Part at Apex Club in the City Time Square on June 24. On the same day, the Citrineland Pride Open House will also take place at The Median Showroom/Calyx, Cebu IT Park, while Draft Punk Craft Café in Mango Square will also be celebrating the Cebu Pride Festival Night on June 30.
Additionally, the neighboring city of Mandaue will also be hosting its very own Pride March on June 25 at the Mandaue Heritage Plaza.
Kahilwayan 2023 (Cagayan de Oro)
Amplifying voices and creating safe spaces in Mindanao, Kahilwayan 2023 (which translates to freedom) is also celebrated in Cagayan de Oro City Community Amphitheater. Particularly situated in Plaza Divisoria, gates will open at one in the afternoon for the booths, while the program proper for the Pride March will commence at three from the Rotunda. There’s also an evening program starting at six and the most awaited after-party at ten.
Make your voice heard and be part of the powerful movement by joining the Pride March and other LGBTQIA+ activities in your area. Stand up for equality, celebrate diversity, and support the LGBTQ+ community. Together, we can advocate for inclusivity, challenge stereotypes, and promote a society that embraces love and acceptance for all. Join the Pride March and make a positive impact on shaping a more inclusive and equal future. Happy Pride Month!