Your Tel Aviv Pride guide 2019!
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Your Tel Aviv Pride guide 2019!

Tel Aviv is not known as the “gay capital of the Middle East” for nothing, and the city’s Pride Parade is certainly known as a wild one.

Brigit Grant is the Jewish News Supplements Editor

Tel Aviv Gay Pride
Tel Aviv Gay Pride

Now in its 21st year, the 2019 parade is being held on Friday 14 June, although Pride Week stretches from Sunday 9 June to Saturday 15 June.

With 250,000 visitors expected, it once again represents a chance for Jews young and old to shed their straight-laced heterosexual gender-as-per-birth shackles and let their inner queen romp riotously, if only for a day. As for those whose straight-laced heterosexual gender-as-per-birth shackles were shed a while back, well, it’s just party time!

The parade is due to start at 10am and will include a large fair with music, drag shows, speeches, specially designed floats, marching groups. Departing from Ben Zion Boulevard/ Melchett Street, the parade route winds its way along the beautiful streets of Tel Aviv towards the city’s Charles Clore beach, where the famous beach party will be held from 2.30pm.

Participants will need their dancing flip-flops, as they drift through a wealth of artists, DJs and food-sellers. It’s the perfect place for people to meet, including liaisons pre-arranged through the city’s gay dating app, Atraf. For LGBT+ visitors, there are some ‘must’ places to go, things to do and people to be seen with. The prized TLV19 bracelet, purchased through the Atraf website, will get you into the best parties.

When it comes to bars, you could do worse than head for Shpagat (Nahalat Binyamin 43), a relaxed cafe by day and gay place-to-be by night. It gets rave reviews from straight and not-so for its vibes, cocktails and décor.

Location-wise, you can walk to most small gay clubs from here but, for the mega parties, you’ll need a taxi. If you’re looking for sultry stretches of Mediterranean sand, head for Hilton Beach, which was picked as one of the top 10 gay beaches in the world. If you’re looking to bathe ALL your body in the sun, head slightly down the coast to Ga’ash Beach, named after the nearby kibbutz.

The best bodies are made in the gym, of course, and some gyms will be of more interest to LGBT+ visitors than others.

Three that spring athletically to mind include the Space Gyms at Florentine, Shenkin and Yarkon. Find your way here and elsewhere using the handy map  at www.gaytelavivguide.com

The centre of your stay 

Israel continues to be at the forefront of gay rights, and the LGBTQ movement worldwide. There are countless opportunities to be involved in the LGBTQ community, specifically in Tel Aviv.

The Gay Centre was founded as a safe environment for LGBTQ individuals. There, people receive support and find opportunities to engage with the community. The centre has full-time employed staff, as well as interns, and volunteers who head and organise events all over the city. The Gay Centre is the primary leader and facilitator of gay programmes and initiatives within Israel. The leaders are exceptionally welcoming and invite everyone to take part in the spectrum of services and activities available.

Russian Around  …And Around!

In 2012, Russia passed a law banning all public LGBT “propaganda”. Subsequent to the law, it was decided to ban all gay prides in the country for the next 100 years. Instead of waiting for 2112, Kok Schok has initiated a joint venture with Popoff Kitchen, the gay party line from Moscow, to hold the 2019 Russian Gay Pride parade in Tel Aviv.

The parade is a protest against Russia’s harsh policy breaching human rights in general, and LGBT rights in particular.  Kok Schok says it  is “an act of solidarity with our Russian friends in their struggle”.

Friday 14 June 2019

CONFIRMED DATES

Tel Aviv’s Pride events reach their peak on Friday 14 June with a series of huge events.

10am. Happening

A hot minute before the parade hits off, you can turn up for drag shows, local LGBTQ businesses boots and some uplifting speeches.

12pm. Pride Parade Launch

The parade will launch from Ben Zion – Melchett towards Bograshov St, Ben Yehuda and the Herbert Samual Promenade.

2pm. Main Pride Party @ Charles Clore Park

Beginning at noon till the evening, you can expect a parade of artists and DJ sets alongside food stands and pride merchandise.

TLV19 Pride Party  bracelet gives you access to the best  event sand parties

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