A brief history of Savannah Pride
“We have a well-established queer community in Savannah,” says S Sargon. “By 1969, The Basement had opened as Savannah’s first gay club, and held the annual Sara Awards, which were given out for contributions to the queer community. In the 70s, multiple gay discos opened. Then First Network was founded in 1985 as Georgia’s first and oldest LGBTQIA+ organization.”
But travelers looking to join the Pride festivities should plan a visit in the fall, not June, as in other cities. “Savannah, like many places in the south, holds our Pride celebrations in the fall due to June heat,” S Sargon says. Festivities—which tend to be held in October— typically include a festival, parade, masquerade, drag, and live music. Smaller events are often planned for June, though, including the annual Stonewall Block Party, which featured booths for advocacy organizations, HIV testing, food, drink, and music.
The importance of Pride
“Pride is not just about celebrating who we are in a world that often wants us to be something different,” says S Sargon. “For me, it is also about visibility. It is a way to show our communities that we exist and that they already know us—we’re their neighbors, shopkeepers, clients, friends, and family.”