This week kicks off Pride week in Grand Rapids, leading up to Saturday’s Grand Rapids Pride Festival at Calder Plaza.

The GR Pride Festival is happening this Saturday from Noon until 10 pm.

At 11 am, prior to the gates opening for the festival, at Ah-Nab-Awen Park, it's the 5th annual Pre-Pride Pep Rally, Hand-In-Hand; Together We Stand!  This is event, which this year will also feature Free Mom Hugs, reflects on the importance of pride and community and ends with everyone marching to the gates of Pride at noon, when they officially open.

This year the Grand Rapids' Pride Festival is boasting over 100 vendors, 10 food trucks, the Bell’s Brewery Beer garden, Meijer Family Fun Zone along with a local stage with performers from ‘The Drunken Retort’ and others.  Main stage entertainment will include DJ Keller Shaw, drag performances as well as:

Sizzy Rocket

Mya, (remember her from ‘Case of The Ex’ and ‘Lady Marmalade’)

and headliner MAX (yeah, ‘Light’s Down Low’ Max.)

If you want to go to the Grand Rapids Pride Festival, tickets are $8 at the gate or online ahead of time HERE.

Leading up to the GR Pride Festival, there are a few other events you can attend and celebrate PRIDE in Grand Rapids:

TUESDAY: it’s IMAGINE: Pride Night with Circle Theater at Speak Easy Lounge, 600 Monroe Ave NW. The event starts at 7 pm and is free to attend, but donations will go to the Grand Rapids Pride Center.

WEDNESDAYHonoring The Pulse 49 at the Blue Bridge.  The event is scheduled from 8 to 10 pm and will honor the legacy and remember the lives of the 49 people who were killed in June 2016 at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando.  It's a family-friendly event, and candles will be provided for the vigil.

THURSDAY: Zorage: A Collaborative Pride Event is going on at Zoko 822, which is located at 822 Ottawa Ave NW. It's a free event open to all ages, with food trucks and drink specials and DJs spinning during the party which is happening 6 to 11 pm.

FRIDAY: Petty’s PRIDE-A-PALOOZA: A Comedy Cabaret at the Comedy Project GR at 540 W Leonard AVE NW – the event kicks off at 8 pm and features live music entertaining improv and special guests.  The show stars Patty LuPone from Chicago. The event will benefit the Grand Rapids Pride Center, Tickets are available HERE

FRIDAYThe 5th Annual White Party at Rumor’s Nightclub. Put on your best whites and dance the night before Pride fest away. The party starts at 9 pm and is open to ages 18+. The White Party benefits the Grand Rapids Pride Center

SATURDAY: After the pride festival, it's AFTERGLOW - Pride Festival After Party in the Vanguard Room at 20 Monroe Live, hosted by the Dunes, with DJ Keller Shaw spinning. Doors open at 10 pm and it's 18+ to get in. First 150 through the door get a complimentary drink courtesy of Smirnoff and Red Bull and the party benefits the Grand Rapids Pride Center.

SUNDAY: Don't miss the Pride Block Party Sunday from 2 pm to 9 pm, the event is free to attend with games, drinks and live music.  The party will help benefit, HQ Runaway and Homeless Youth Drop-In Center.