PRIDE DRENCHES KEY WEST IN COLOR

a group of people walking down a street holding a rainbow flag
Once again, Key West’s Pride parade was a colorful spectacle of fun and acceptance on an island that specializes in both. The June 9 parade capped off a week of Pride festivities. LARRY BLACKBURN/Keys Weekly

Key West’s annual Pride celebration always reminds me of the iconic scene in “The Wizard of Oz,” when Dorothy opens the drab door of her humble home to a world drenched in color and possibility.

Pride celebrations in Key West are not a black-and-white old movie, steeped in shades of gray, but rather a technicolor spectrum of rainbows, neon, sequins, glitter and tutus.

And this year was no different. Add in the 2024 disco theme, and you had the perfect soundtrack for a week of diversity, dancing, drinks and good-natured debauchery. 

The city’s Pride parade on June 9 capped off the five-day festival that also included film screenings, sunset sails, pool parties and drag performances. Once again, the parade featured a 100-foot section of the Sea-to-Sea Rainbow Flag that in 2003 stretched 1.25 miles down the length of Duval Street.

Key West Pride is one of the premier events presented by the Key West Business Guild and supported by local businesses and organizations.

a woman with an umbrella on top of a van
two women are riding in the back of a jeep
a man riding a bike down a street next to a crowd of people
a couple of men standing next to each other
a group of people walking down a street holding flags
a woman holding a rainbow colored umbrella in the street
Mandy Miles
Mandy Miles drops stuff, breaks things and falls down more than any adult should. An award-winning writer, reporter and columnist, she's been stringing words together in Key West since 1998. "Local news is crucial," she says. "It informs and connects a community. It prompts conversation. It gets people involved, holds people accountable. The Keys Weekly takes its responsibility seriously. Our owners are raising families in Key West & Marathon. Our writers live in the communities we cover - Key West, Marathon & the Upper Keys. We respect our readers. We question our leaders. We believe in the Florida Keys community. And we like to have a good time." Mandy's married to a saintly — and handy — fishing captain, and can't imagine living anywhere else.