Iowa City Gay Pride 2016

Celebrating Gay Pride in this progressive Iowa college town

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••• Iowa City hosts a well-attended Gay Pride celebration each June. photo by Andrew Collins

About 75,000 people reside in Iowa City, an attractive college town (home to the University of Iowa) that's one of the most liberal communities between Chicago and Denver. In mindset and the size of its gay community, it's rather kindred with other university communities in the region, like Madison, Wisconsin and Columbia, Missouri. In mid-June (the date this year is June 18, 2016), Iowa City Gay Pride, which has been held annually since 1970, takes place in this vibrant community.

It's one of a few Iowa Pride events, with Quad Cities Gay Pride taking place at the beginning of June in the Mississippi River town of Davenport (although it was cancelled last year, but it's hoped it will come back in 2016), Cedar Rapids Gay Pride also taking place in early June (it's just 30 miles north of Iowa City), and Capital City Iowa Pride in Des Moines taking place one week before.

There's a week's worth of Pride-related events taking place preceding Iowa City Pride weekend - here's the official calendar. On Saturday, June 18, Iowa City Pride Parade kicks off at noon in downtown Iowa City, and the Festival runs from noon through 6:30 pm at the Iowa City downtown Pedestrian Mall (entered from College Street at Linn Street, and Dubuque Street at Washington Street), featuring the usual mix of vendors and entertainers. Then following the festival there may be a performance at popular GLBT club Studio 13 from 7 pm into the wee hours; check back here for updates.

Also, on Friday night before Pride, June 17, there's a a Pride Picnic in the Park held at 5:30 pm in Upper City Park.

Iowa City Gay Resources

You'll find plenty going on at Iowa City's many gay-friendly bars and restaurants around this weekend. Check online resources about the Iowa City GLBT scene, such as our Iowa City Gay Guide and Accessline, the region's gay and lesbian newspaper (it's based in Iowa but serves the entire Heartland region).

Also take a look at the excellent travel site produced by the city's official tourism organization, the Iowa City/Coralville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau.