PrideFest Records, 1989-2001


Milwaukee's first Pride event occured when the Gay Liberation Front (GLF) organized a "Gay Pride Week" in January 1971. The event was repeated in 1972 and 1973. While there were sporadic "gay days" and picnics in the late 1970s and 1980s, Milwaukeeans typically traveled to Chicago to observe or march in that city's celebrations. However, Pride events were held in Milwaukee in both 1980 and 1981. The Milwaukee Lesbian/Gay Pride Committee (MLGPC) held its first annual pride event in 1988. In 1994 MLGPC was dissolved and PrideFest, Inc. was created. PrideFest has been held at various locations during its history, including Mitchell Park (1988), Cathedral Square Park (1989-1990), Juneau Park (1991-1993), Veterans Park (1994-1995), and the Henry Maier Festival Park (since 1996). The festival features a diverse range of performers and numerous activities such as a volleyball tournament, parade, religious ceremony, mass wedding/commitment ceremony, and fireworks.