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Portland Pride Festival roars back

After a two-year Covid layoff, the big LGBTQ+ celebration is returning to Waterfront Park. Photographer K.B. Dixon shows us what we've been missing.

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Motorcycle, 2014

AT LONG LAST, the Portland Pride Waterfront Festival is going from Zoom to varoom. The annual summer parade and celebration, relegated the past two years by Covid restraints to online events, gets back in the flesh this weekend at Tom McCall Waterfront Park, with attractions from noon to 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 18, and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, June 19. The big parade gathers at 11 a.m. Sunday at Northwest Couch Street and Eighth Avenue, then wends its way down to the Willamette riverfront north of the Burnside Bridge and on south to the festival grounds in the park.

The summer outdoor celebration, which goes back almost a half-century to 1976, just got bigger and bigger until the Covid shutdowns. The 2019 festival drew an estimated 65,000-70,000 visitors. This year’s revived live festival will have strict vaccination-proof requirements (check the vax rules and other other handy info before you go).

To help get you in the mood and remind you of what we’ve been missing the past couple of years, photographer K.B. Dixon has assembled a portfolio of captured moments from past Pride festivals between 2013 and 2019. From Darcelle to Wonder Woman to Birdman and more, it’s been a sight to make eyes – and spirits – soar.

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Thumbs Up, 2013

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Hair, 2014

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Darcelle and Friend, 2015

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Beard, 2019

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Charlie, 2013

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Trio, 2017

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Wonder Woman, 2017

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Donut, 2016

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Birdman, 2017

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Glitz, 2016

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Grannies, 2014

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Ears, 2016

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Dogs, 2017

K.B. Dixon’s work has appeared in numerous magazines, newspapers, and journals. The recipient of an OAC Individual Artist Fellowship Award, he is the winner of both the Next Generation Indie Book Award and the Eric Hoffer Book Award. He is the author of seven novels: The Sum of His SyndromesAndrew (A to Z)A Painter’s LifeThe Ingram InterviewThe Photo AlbumNovel Ideas, and Notes as well as the essay collection Too True, Essays on Photography, and the short story collection, My Desk and I. Examples of his photographic work may be found in private collections, juried exhibitions, online galleries, and at K.B. Dixon Images.

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