The 2020 TriPride Parade and Festival will be held in downtown Bristol, Tennessee and Bristol, Virginia on August 29, 2020. The annual event is in its third year and will mark a continuing journey around the region.
In addition to being a first for Bristol, Tennessee and Bristol, Virginia, the TriPride Parade and Festival marks a first in national history: A Pride event held in two states at once.
“We’re looking at similarly split cities such as Kansas City, Texarkana, and St. Louis,” Kenn Lyon, TriPride President said. “Based on our research, all of those seem to have their event in one state, but not both. TriPride in Bristol will take place in both Tennessee and Virginia. The parade will go down State Street starting in Tennessee culminating with the festival held in Cumberland Square Park in Virginia.”
TriPride organizers are keeping a similar format to the previous years’ events, including a series of activities during Pride week that lead up to the parade and festival on Saturday. Live entertainment, vendors, exhibitors and food trucks will be present. The parade and festival will take place in the heart of downtown Bristol and will be free to the public. The 2020 theme is “A Good Place For Pride”. This is an homage to the host cities and their iconic Bristol sign on State Street, which reaches across the state boundary.
Organizers are also working to incorporate and showcase the sister cities’ rich legacy of music into their planning. “We want TriPride 2020 to have reflections of the host city and its culture. Bristol has a long history with music and we want to capitalize on that and work it into all of our planning,” said Jason Willis, Marketing Chair for TriPride.
TriPride will be accepting parade and festival exhibitor applications beginning in late January or early February. All contingencies and exhibitors, including those who signed up for the 2019 waiting list, will be emailed prior for an opportunity to sign up. Potential sponsors are encouraged to visit the website and click the ‘Sponsor’ link or email firstname.lastname@example.org. A TriPride representative will get in touch.
TriPrideTN, Inc. is a 501(c)3 charity formed in 2017 whose purpose is to organize and present a free community Pride parade and festival. The parade and festival event is the primary tool the organization uses to further its mission: building a stronger and more inclusive community across Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. In September 2018, TriPride held the Pride parade and festival — the first of its kind in the Tri-Cities — hosted in Founders Park, Johnson City, Tennessee. Over 10,000 people gathered for the festivities. The parade featured the largest contingency in Johnson City’s history. In 2019, TriPride was held in downtown Kingsport, Tennessee. An estimated 10,000 came to the event throughout the day. Over 1,100 people marched in the parade representing 72 contingencies and 110 festival exhibitors were present.