Pride

Pregame Your Pride With these LGBTQ+ Spots in NYC!

Before the boozy after-party, some lively history.

Kelsey Montague’s Angel Wings

From our changemakers (Sylvia Rivera, Edie Windsor, Cynthia Nixon) to our artists (Alvin Ailey, Keith Haring, Tony Kushner, Susan Sontag, Alan Cumming, and Lady Gaga, to name just a smidge) to even our ice cream, New York City has always been one of the most LGBTQIA+ friendly places on Earth. We don’t need a dedicated month to remember that this city was made great by the brave folks who chose New York as their home. But we’ll take the parades and rainbows and glitter and balloons anyway, thank you very much!

June also happens to be the most beautiful time for a stroll around our city to pay homage to some of the incredible spaces and fabulous people important to New York’s LGBTQIA+ history and culture. There is so much to be proud of.

Julius’s

The oldest gay bar in New York is as bustling now as it was in 1864. Cheers to the activists who staged a “sip-in” in 1966, challenging New York State’s restrictions on gay bars. Funk thaaaat. 159 West 10th Street (between Seventh Avenue and Waverly Place), West Village

Alice Austen’s House

Alice Austen (1866–1952) ignored all societal norms in her professional and personal life. She photographed striking portraits of women in drag—absolutely shocking in the Victorian era—which became iconic images for the trans community. 2 Hylan Boulevard, Staten Island

Photo courtesy of Alice Austen House

Angel of the Waters

Lesbian artist Emma Stebbins (1815–1882) created the first public artwork by a woman in New York City. Her sculpture, Angel of the Waters, in Central Park’s Bethesda Fountain, is prominently featured in the final scene of Angels in America’s part two, Perestroika. 72 Terrace Drive (in Central Park), Upper West Side

Lesbian Herstory Archives

Lesbian Herstory Archives collects written and visual materials by and about lesbians. Think: lesbian pulp fiction (ooh la la!); protest posters; the L.O.V.E. Tapes (Lesbians Organized for Video Experience) from the early 1970s; and Dyke TV footage from the 1990s. Afterward, head across the street to Prospect Park and see if you can catch a softball game from the all-women league there. 484 14th Street, South Slope

Photo courtesy of Lesbian Herstory Archives

Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art

While you could argue that almost all art museums are de facto gay and lesbian museums, this one is dedicated exclusively to the conversation-changing work of LGBTQ artists. There is always something incredible on view here; stop by this summer to see “Daybreak: New Affirmations in Queer Photography” and Leonard Fink’s self-portraits26 Wooster Street (between Canal and Grand Streets), SoHo

Courtesy of Leslie Lohman Museum

Cubbyhole

The piñatas, fake fruit, and sparkly blue stars hanging from the ceiling give this historic lesbian bar its whimsical feel. Play your favorite Janis Joplin jam on the jukebox, snack on some free popcorn, and check out ladies of all types: butches, bois, femmes, Chapstick lesbians, gold stars, baby dykes…Cubbyhole welcomes all. 281 West 12th Street (between West 4th Street and Greenwich Avenue), West Village

George Segal’s Gay Liberation Monument

These understated white-lacquered statues in Christopher Park by artist George Segal commemorate the Stonewall Inn riots with simple tableaus: two same-sex couples chatting in comfort and familiarity. Grab a Salty Pimp cone from Big Gay Ice Cream and enjoy it on a bench next to these quiet guys and gals. Christopher Street Park, 38-64 Christopher Street (between Waverly Place and Seventh Avenue), West Village

christopher-street-nyc

Housing Works Bookstore Cafe

For three decades, the good people of Housing Works have worked to end the joint crises of homelessness and AIDS. They make helping the cause absolutely pleasant with yummy muffins and quiches, plenty of table space to work or meet friends, and, of course, an excellent selection of used books! 126 Crosby Street (between Prince and Houston Streets), Nolita

Kelsey Montague’s Angel Wings

You may recognize Kelsey Montague’s angel wings from Taylor Swift’s Instagram post. This global artist created personalized fuchsia and cobalt wings for Angels in America, which you can see outside the Neil Simon Theater, plus a neon rendition inside. Step right up and snap your new profile photo; we’re all angels in America, after all. 250 West 52nd Street (between Seventh and Eighth Avenues), Times Square

Kelsey Montague’s Angel Wings