BY STEVE ROTHAUS, srothaus@MiamiHerald.com
About 80,000 revelers are expected at this year’s fifth annual Miami Beach Gay Pride festival, says Babak Movahedi, board chairman of the pride committee and owner of Mova lounge off Lincoln Road.
“To my great surprise, the newborn that was created five years ago has become a teenager,” says Movahedi, who has chaired four of the first five festivals. “People are coming in from all over the world and all over the county. The fact that it is Miami Beach and an amazing place to be will help. ... It helps that we are a completely free event the day of the parade. The entire community comes to enjoy whether they are LGBT or not.”
Among this weekend’s most popular free events:
Lincoln Road block party
Annual pride block party outside Movahedi’s bar, 1625 Michigan Ave., Miami Beach. This year’s event features DJs Kidd Madonny Bryan Zero, a performance by drag diva Erika Norell and an Andrew Christian fashion show. 8 p.m. Friday to 3 a.m. Saturday.
Lummus Park beach party
Beach Party at Lummus Park, 12 Street and Ocean Drive, Miami Beach. DJs Theresa and Manny Lehman. 1 to 8 p.m. Saturday.
High heel race
Azucar High Heel Race, on Ocean Drive from 9th to 12th streets. Runners and participants must register by calling 305-316-4971 and arrive at 9th Street by 11:15 a.m. Sunday. Race begins 11:30 a.m.
Gay pride parade
Fifth annual Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade along Ocean Drive from Fifth to 12 streets. This year’s grand marshal: outgoing Miami Beach Mayor Matti Herrera Bower, in that office since 2007.
“This is the last year she will be mayor,” Movahedi says. “She was instrumental — she gave me the go ahead to start pride. It is time to say thank you and that is why she is grand marshal.” Noon to 1 p.m. Sunday. Free.
Adam Lambert performs
A pride street festival continues through 6 p.m. Entertainment, including singer Adam Lambert at 8 p.m., runs through 11 p.m. at the main stage on Ocean Drive between 11th and 12th streets. There is no VIP seating. “You can hear the music,” says Movahedi, “but you’ll have to be there early to be in the front lines.”
Miami Beach Gay Pride info
For details about Miami Beach Gay Pride and a full schedule of events, visit www.MiamiBeachGayPride.com