Exploring San Diego


Guide to San Diego Pride 2023: Parade, festival, and fun

2018 Pride Parade 1.jpeg
Posted at 10:06 AM, Jul 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-15 13:10:39-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Hundreds of thousands of San Diegans and visitors are expected to unite in America's Finest City for the annual parade celebrating the LGBTQ+ community and its contributions.

San Diego Pride's big weekend is taking over the city with a massive parade and epic festival, featuring LGBTQ+ artists Saucy Santana and Princess Nokia.

The theme for this year's Festival and Parade is "Thrive!," which is inspired by San Diego Pride's ability to survive the struggles of the last several years, especially after 2020's daunting coronavirus pandemic.

"There is art in our advocacy and advocacy in our art. Our annual celebrations bring together hundreds of thousands of people who converge around LGBTQ arts and culture with clear social justice messages” said Fernando Z. López, Executive Director of San Diego Pride.

“As LGBTQ people whose lives, events, art, and culture have increasingly been under legislative and violent threat, it is now more vital than ever to remember that creating civic and artistic spaces where our LGBTQ community can safely and authentically be ourselves is a social justice issue. These headliners, our brilliant local artists and musicians, and our entire community are ready to stand up, stand out, and help us all thrive!"

The Spirit of Stonewall Rayy will be held Friday, July 14, from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Hillcrest Pride Flag at University Avenue and Normal Street. The event is free and open to the public.


Where: Starts at the Hillcrest Pride Flag

When: 10 a.m.

Route length: 1.5 miles


Pride lovers can revel in multiple stages and dance areas, beer gardens, community booths, and vendors at the Pride Festival in Balboa Park. This family-friendly event is free for kids. General admission tickets, weekend passes, and VIP admission are available. Organizers have announced its 2023 all-LGBTQ lineup and it's going to be a blast!


Free parking lots are available, both Saturday and Sunday at the Old Naval Hospital at Park Boulevard and President’s Way. From there you can catch a free shuttle before and after the events.

Driving to the parade and festival can be a struggle with so many of our friends trying to do the same. Make it easy on yourself by finding other, less stressful options.

  • Bike or take a scooter to the festival and you can leave it at the bike and scooter corral located at the corner of Balboa Drive and El Prado.
  • Take a ride share to the festival and get dropped off right at the entrance at the corner of Laurel St. and 6th Avenue.
  • Use their free parking lot located at the Old Naval Hospital (Park Boulevard and Presidents Way) and then take their free shuttle to the parade and festival! 


Numerous road closures will be in place during the parade. Starting Friday at 6 a.m. Normal St. and Harvey Milk St. will be closed.

On Saturday, from 5 a.m. to 4 p.m., the following streets will be closed:

  • Centre Street (University Ave. to Park Blvd.)
  • Normal Street (University Ave. to Washington St.)
  • Cleveland Avenue (Richmond St. to Washington St.)
  • Harvey Milk Way (Cleveland Ave. to Centre St.)
  • Lincoln Avenue (Washington St. to Park Blvd.)

From 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., the following streets will be closed:

  • The Quince Street exit off 163 North
  • The University Avenue exit off 163 South will be reduced to one lane and right turn only onto University Avenue

From 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., the following streets will be closed:

  • University Avenue (5th Ave. to Park Blvd.)
  • Herbert Street (University Ave. to Robinson Ave.)
  • Essex Street (Herbert St. to Richmond St.)
  • Centre Street (University Ave. for half the block south)
  • 6th Avenue (University Ave. to Upas St.)
  • Robinson Avenue (5th Ave. to 6th Ave.)
  • Evans Place (5th Ave. to 6th Ave.)
  • Pennsylvania Avenue (5th Ave. to 6th Ave.)
  • Anderson Place (5th Ave. to 6th Ave.)
  • Ivy Lane (5th Ave. to 6th Ave.)
  • Upas Street (5th Ave. to 6th Ave.)
  • Balboa Drive in Balboa Park (6th Ave. and Upas St. to El Prado)