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San Diego's Top Weekend Events: Pride Edition

A float carrying participants in the San Diego Pride Parade waits its turn on Normal Street, July 13, 2013.
A float carrying participants in the San Diego Pride Parade waits its turn on Normal Street, July 13, 2013.
San Diego's Top Weekend Events: Pride Edition
San Diego's Top Weekend Events: Pride Edition GUEST: Nina Garin, editor/producer, KPBS/Arts Calendar

This is KPBS midday edition. I'm Andrew Bowan in for Maureen Cavanaugh. In case you haven't heard this weekend is San Diego Pride. And joining me for our weekend preview to talk about some of the events is Kate PBS arts calendar editor Nina gear and Nina welcome. Hello. So let's start with the main event. The one that everybody knows the pride parade and the Pride festival. Yes that's grown to be one of San Diego's biggest events. Actually it brings about 200000 people over the weekend. So this year's theme is persist with pride and it starts with the parade at 11:00 which is the meeting point is the pride flag and then it goes down university west to sticks them then you end up at Babbo a park and the whole parade is about one and a half miles. Can you describe the scene at the parade. Yeah. So years ago I actually lived on the parade route and it was mostly LGBTQ groups and maybe politicians who are out. But now it just seems to bring everyone in the community like businesses are there like Qualcomm and health care. There's families there's military. And also you can just see more politicians even just supporting. And there's also obviously this year with the climate. There'll be some resistent groups and that will get a little political. And that parade feeds into the festival which happens in bubble park right. A lot of people go from the parade and then into this big festival in Balbo Park there's Fender's exhibits food there's presentation and lots and lots of entertainment. The Pride Festival always has a big headliner who's going to be that performing act this year. Over the years it has brought out Cyndi Lauper and racer. I love eraser but this year it's the 1990s band TLC but our indie group known for so many classic hits like Kreep No Scrubs waterfalls and let's take a listen to TLC. This here is waterfalls. I'm having flashbacks to middle school dances. I love that song. So it's it's hard for me to believe now. It's been more than 16 years since one of the founding members Lisa Left Eye Lopez died in a car crash in Honduras. How does the group handle her absence. They didn't replace her. So they are now touring and recording new music as a duo. And there was an article in The Chicago Tribune where someone asked if they had ever considered replacing her and it was like they were offended like there's no way she could ever be replaced. TLC performs on Sunday. Who else are we going to be able to see at the festival. There's a pop star named Joe Joe who headlines on Saturday. Then you can see the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus. A lot of Latin bands like through my soul mariachis. There's many many deejays and drag entertainers among whom I have to say I'm very excited about seeing O'Hara and Cameron Michaels who are two of the finalists on Season 10 of Repulsor so can't wait to see them on Sunday evening. So the festival and parade are some of the biggest pride related events. But what about some of the things that are a little bit out of the way. So if you want to escape the craziness of the festival you can duck over to the San Diego History Center. They have an exhibition called LGBTQ plus San Diego stories of struggles and triumphs. It's billed as the first exhibition on the history of our local LGBTQ plus community. And what is the history of that community in San Diego. Well it hasn't always been the most open. They have an exhibit that features a flyer from 1982 and it was for these six women were trying to get help because they were being quote ferreted out of their Navy submarine. And so you know that was like a year long ordeal. And it was in 1982 not that long ago. And next to it though is a photo of Toni Atkins. She's the city's first openly gay Senate leader. And so just the contrast of how far the community has come. What else will people see at this exhibition. There will be photos. They'll be videos they'll be part of the AIDS quilt. That's kind of relevant to San Diego and it also focuses on the idea of families and where the community is headed. LGBTQ plus San Diego is open this weekend but it's up through January at the San Diego History Center in Balboa Park. There is another art exhibition happening in Little Italy. Tell us about jumper Maibach. He's an abstract artist from Texas. His name is actually Ben workman and he had a lot of problems coming out and he had these traumatic experiences in his work. And then he adopted this clown personality called jumper Maibach. And that is kind of what he creates art. Now he walks around sometimes with the full clown makeup. How would you describe his work. There's a lot of primary colors a lot of layers. I would describe it like think Jackson Pollock meets like a Texas Carnival. So what is he doing for Pride weekend. So he created a series of pride paintings that he's touring to festivals around the United States it's called introspection and it supports the community and also the ME2 movement and his work is on display at Myer Fine Art in Little Italy and he's actually going to be there tonight. Now before we go you also wanted to mention a play happening at diversionary theater. Yes. They have a new program for San Diego teens called Team version Mary. And they got together from a variety of backgrounds and neighborhoods and they put on a show and the inaugural show will be staged next weekend. And so what is this show they'll be doing. It's called queer spon. It's a play by Mallory Abbot Don and it's the story about. It's kind of like the inner life of a teenager who has two mothers. And it also focuses on the bullying and the stigma around the LGBTQ identity. Queer spon will be performed next weekend July 20th at diversionary theater and Nina Garin is our KPBS arts calendar Ed.. Nina thanks. Thanks. Have a great time.

San Diego Pride is underway and the weekend is filled with celebrations, art exhibitions, theater and a historic look at San Diego's LGBTQ+ community.

San Diego LGBT Pride Parade and Festival

Music, Visual Arts

San Diego Pride brings parties, shows and events all weekend, but the biggest draw is the Pride Parade and Festival. You’ll see a variety of groups marching down University Avenue, from members of the LGBTQ+ community to representatives from local businesses and politicians.


The parade heads to Balboa Park, where there’s a two-day festival that features a performance by '90s R&B group TLC and pop star JoJo. You’ll also find informational booths, shopping, food and lots more.

Details: 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Balboa Park. Free to $200; find tickets to San Diego Pride.

LGBTQ+San Diego: Stories of Struggles and Triumphs


The San Diego History Center and Lambda Archives of San Diego present the first exhibition about San Diego's LGBTQ+ community.

Through photos, documents and videos, the exhibition focuses on various community themes including identity, persecution, pioneers, families and the future of the LGBTQ+ community in San Diego.


Details: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m .daily. San Diego History Center, 1649 El Prado, Balboa Park. $5; find tickets to the exhibition.

A promotional photo of artist Jumper Maybach.
Courtesy of Jumper Maybach official site
A promotional photo of artist Jumper Maybach.

Jumper Maybach

Visual Arts

Texas abstract artist Jumper Maybach created a series of paintings called The Pride Collection: Introspection as a way to honor and support the LGBTQ+ community.

His pieces will be on exhibit throughout July, and during Pride, the artist will make an appearance to discuss his work and his history.

Jumper Maybach is the persona of Ben Workman, a man who adopted a clown persona after dealing with traumatic experiences at work and with his community after coming out.

Details: 5 to 8 p.m. Friday. Meyer Fine Art, 2400 Kettner Blvd., Little Italy. Free; additional show information.



Diversionary Theatre's new Teen-Versionary program brings together young people from a variety of backgrounds to produce a new LGBTQ-themed show.

The inaugural production, "queerSpawn," is about the inner life of a teenager who has two mothers, and focuses on bullying and the stigma around the LGBTQ identity.

Details: 3 and 7 p.m. Friday, July 20. Diversionary Theatre, 4545 Park Blvd., University Heights. $10; find tickets to "queerSpawn."