You Are Included

Greater Palm Springs Pride 2021

By The Standard Magazine Staff

After the stress, uncertainty, and isolation of the pandemic, there is finally a bit of light at the end of the tunnel and a chance to finally come together. Greater Palm Springs Pride is back; large, in charge and live. The 35th Palm Springs Pride will once again gather in Palm Springs to educate, inspire, and commemorate our diverse community. Together, we honor the past and empower each other to live our authentic, truest selves. It is in the spirit of solidarity that we celebrate what it means to be a member of this beautiful community, to remember those we have lost, affirm our commitment in the fight for equality, and look toward the future and what it holds for LGBTQ people worldwide.

Our visibility remains our greatest tool to push back against those who oppress us. Greater Palm Springs Pride creates moments of visibility for the LGBTQ community.

Pride is for everyone. That is why this year’s theme “You Are Included” means so much. So, whether you’re a member of the LGBTQ community, a supportive ally, or someone who’s questioning where you fit into the spectrum, you are part of our diverse and vibrant community, and your place is here with us. We stand with Pride around the world; we give a voice to the power of self-expression, inclusiveness, and love.

Community Grand Marshal

Community Grand Marshals are recognized for having a positive impact in the region through the many years of support they have provided to community organizations and fundraising efforts large and small. This year, we are recognizing and celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Streetbar, the first Gay Bar in Palm Springs.

When it opened in August 1991, Streetbar was the first Gay bar in Palm Springs and is now the longest running LGBTQ bar in the Coachella Valley. When Dick Haskamp and Hank Morgan, founders of Streetbar, opened on Arenas Road they paved the way for what is now the LGBTQ community business district. Civic minded Dick made Streetbar a community fundraising institution as well as the local gay watering hole.

Streetbar continues its longstanding tradition of bringing community together with events. In the thirty years since its opening, the staff and customers of Streetbar have raised funds for local charities, including Aids Assistance Program (AAP), LGBTQ Center of the Desert (The Center), and Palm Springs Animal Shelter. The organizations were beneficiaries of Streetbar’s two major fundraising events, the Holiday Wreath Auction and the ArtWall Project.

The wreath auction, now hosted by 849 Restaurant, sold wreaths created and donated by customers, local businesses and Streetbar staff. The ArtWall Project was the brainchild of several of Streetbar’s artistic employees as a way to show and sell their own creative works. Other local artists are also invited to participate in the monthly show donating a percentage of sales to benefit AAP and other charities.

In 2006, AAP presented the Streetbar ArtWall Project committee with the annual Gloria Greene Inspiration Award, named after the organization’s founder and community activist Gloria Greene.

Dick dedicated his life, time and resources to the Palm Springs LGBTQ community, serving on the boards of the original Desert Gay Rodeo Association, Desert Business Association, Palm Springs Desert Gay Tourism Guild, Aids Assistance Program, and The Center.  He was also an entertainer with the community fundraising powerhouse drag troupe, Les Dames de Soleil, and he holds the prestigious position as the first Grand Marshal of the Palm Springs Pride Parade.

The City of Palm Springs honored Dick for his humanitarian and philanthropic contributions to Palm Springs, on February 8, 2014, with the 362 Golden Palm Star located at 200 S. Palm Canyon Drive, on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars. Posthumously he received the Legacy Award from The Center for his philanthropy and community activism.

Dick always said it was the best staff, a good drink and a friendly atmosphere that garnered Streetbar the loyal customers and its great success. Even after a difficult and treacherous past year, what remains unmistakably clear – it is the remarkable people that stand behind that bar everyday providing a friendly smile and excellent service, as well as the longtime behind-the-scenes support staff that clean, maintain the bar and keep things moving smoothly that have made it possible for Streetbar to prevail and persevere for 30 years. Fifteen of the twenty employees have been with Streetbar from 10 to 21 years.

Thank you Streetbar for embracing the local community and international visitors alike, welcoming all and promoting a safe, positive environment to celebrate not only who we are but what we can achieve together.

Dick Haskamp passed away on March 4th, 2018, leaving his legacy and beloved Streetbar to his longtime general manager David Farnsworth and accountant Conrad Riley. Sadly, Conrad Riley passed in May of 2020, leaving his business shares to his husband, Steven Smith. 

2021 Palm Springs Pride Honors Awards

2021 Palm Springs Pride Honors Awards honors individuals for their work advancing the causes of LGBTQ individuals and their allies.

Six awards celebrate extraordinary voices in the community, a leather icon, an internationally recognized artist, a celebrated musician, a compassionate business owner, a chef, and someone with forty years of service to LGBTQ organizations.  The awards announcement marks the approach of Pride Week in the region under the worldwide theme of “You are Included.”

Entrepreneur and sought-after chef Betty C. Berrysmith is the Spirit of Stonewall Volunteer of the Year. A founding member of L-Fund and board member since 2013, Betty offers her culinary skill and talent to raise funds for lesbians in need. Betty has cooked and served her award-winning gumbo for thousands at the original L-fund gala fundraiser known as the Gumbo Gala.

Leather culture legend Race Bannon is the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award. Race has elevated awareness of the leather community’s contributions toward LGBTQ liberation for nearly 50 years. As a writer and activist, he has ensured the broader progressive community discourse includes leather, kink, and BDSM.  

An accomplished artist, a feminist, and a groundbreaker, Nancy Worthington receives a Lifetime Achievement Award. For forty-five years, Nancy’s art has been a social commentary of life. She has covered many different topics, including police brutality, the environment, feminism, human rights, and scathing politics. Her unique visual language has brought her international attention, and her work is in permanent collections around the world.

The 2021 Friend of Pride is Keisha D, a champion for the LGBTQ community, humanitarian, singer-activist, and advocate for performing arts in education. For decades Keisha has given her time to perform at charity events and community galas, and fundraising events, all in the name of love and passion for helping others. When not on stage, Keisha mentors high school students and directly supports under-served minority students to pursue an education in music and the arts.

Motivated by gay trailblazers to stand up and not be afraid to tell his own story, Jim Hollenbeck is the Spirit of Pride Award recipient. Jim’s first Pride experience in San Francisco, when he was 22 years old, opened the door to four decades of providing his public relations and communications services to many LGBTQ groups and nonprofit organizations. Jim has attended and supported events and fundraisers across the country that advance equality and celebrate the strength of the LGBTQ community. 

The Spirit of Stonewall Community Service Award recipient is a faithful socially-minded business owner, Cliff Young. Driven by compassion and kindness, Cliff supports urban revitalization projects, mentoring, and work training programs for at-risk youth. Additionally, through his coffee company, he established the Warming Souls program, where he offers laundry services to local homeless and provides them with new socks and personal hygiene kits. Since 2017, in Desert Hot Springs, Cliff has done an average of fifteen weekly loads of laundry for people experiencing homelessness.

 “Learning of the honorees and of the many ways they give back is inspiring. They each have lived their life helping others, and our community is better because of their leadership,” said Ron deHarte, president of Palm Springs Pride. “As in years past, the honorees are not people who seek attention or accolades for what they do. They quietly serve, and we are grateful for the profound impact they have had and continue to have in our community.”

Documenting Palm Springs LGBTQ+ History

Underway by Local Organization

By Ron deHarte

Today the greater Palm Springs area is one of the best-known LGBTQ+ locations in the world. Have you ever wondered how that happened or why this place? Were people just drawn here for its beauty, weather, isolation, and its tendency to live and let live, or were there other reasons?  What were the first businesses and organizations that reached out to welcome the lesbians and gays, allowing this area to evolve to become the mecca that it is today for the LGBTQ+ community? So many questions and so few answers existed, at least in any one place from any one source. And so, this journey began to answer those questions and more, to uncover the history of the LGBTQ+ community of the greater Palm Springs area so that it could be memorialized and shared.

Small hotels, bars, restaurants, and organizations that attracted gays and lesbians gradually began to spring up in unincorporated Cathedral City and Rancho Mirage in the 1960s and 1970s. Then, by the 1980s as more LGBT people became open, Palm Springs itself became a mecca for LGBTQ+ tourists and local residents alike.

Feeling that much of the history of when and how this came about was unknown or lost; a small group of individuals formed The LGBTQ+ History & Archives of the Desert in 2019. “When it became obvious that the LGBTQ+ history of the Palm Springs area was not very well documented and even being lost,” says David Gray, Co-Founder, “I knew something needed to be done to preserve our local LGBTQ+ history for future generations.” Initial efforts were underway to get this organization on its feet when the COVID-19 pandemic put a halt to all plans and progress. After a year-long hiatus, the committee regrouped, and all were willing to jump back in as all were still very committed to the mission and vision of this project.

Working with the Palm Springs Public Library and the Palm Springs Historical Society, the mission of the organization is ‘to collect, preserve and make accessible the LGBTQ+ History of the Greater Palm Springs Area within the Coachella Valley’. Currently, we are focusing on documenting and preserving that history, and sharing it with LGBTQ+ individuals, organizations, allies, and the public. “Author Michael Crichton once said ‘If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.’ and I think that is true for this community and why this project is so important.” says Julie Warren, Co-Founder, and the Library & Public Services Manager of the Palm Springs Public Library.

Still in its infancy, The LGBTQ+ History & Archives of the Desert is looking for documents and memorabilia from bars, inns, restaurants, publications, and LGBT organizations. Should you have any LGBTQ+ treasures in your garage, attic or storage area and would like to donate or loan them, please contact the organization at You can also follow them on Facebook @lgbtqpshistory.

An Inaugural Exhibition will be unveiled and on display during Pride Weekend, November 4 to 7, 2021, at the Wellwood Murray Memorial Library, 100 S. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs.

Festival Highlights

For the second time in Palm Springs Pride’s history, enjoy an adult beverage while strolling through Palm Canyon’s largest LGBTQ entertainment experience.

  • From Friday, Nov. 5 to Sunday, Nov. 7, portions of Palm Canyon Drive and Arenas Road will be designated as a Special Event Zone for the annual Greater Palm Springs Pride festival. 
  • Palm Canyon Drive and Arenas Road will be closed to traffic and transformed into a vibrant, pedestrian friendly Pride Festival unique to Southern California.
  • Adult beverages are available for purchase inside the designated event zone. No alcohol permitted beyond the designated event zone.
  • Multiple stages on Arenas Road and Palm Canyon Drive are included in this new event zone.
  • Exhibitors, nonprofit organizations, food trucks, fair food, and beverage vendors will be on hand.
  • Enjoy a diverse array of artists, entertainers, outdoor beverage lounges with premium cocktails, wine, Bud Light, and festive food and drink purveyors — along with a variety of items including, jewelry, snacks, and sweets.
  • Don’t forget there’s great shopping, restaurants, clubs, and entertainment venues located along world-famous Palm Canyon Drive.
  • Other features include the action-packed Children’s Headquarters (CHQ), the T-Mobile Youth Zone, and HIV/AIDS testing by DAP Health.
  • The festival is a free community event held on Palm Canyon Drive between Amado and Tahquitz Way and on Arenas Road from Indian Canyon to S Calle Encilia.
  • Gate donations will be accepted at entry points to help keep Pride free for everyone to attend.

Official Pride Events

Enjoy Pride in Palm Springs! Honor those who courageously fought for equality and are no longer with us. Live your own truth. Gather your friends together and let’s celebrate our fearlessly authentic lives. Embrace diversity and advance the cause of individual freedom for all. Official Pride events offer something for everyone. Join in. Come out of the closet and be proud! A portion of proceeds from all official Pride events help keep Palm Springs Pride free for all to attend.

The following are just a few of the highlights; please visit to or checkout the official program for a complete and concise schedule of all events happening during Pride.

Palm Springs Pride Parade

Sunday Nov. 7 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

North Palm Canyon Drive to Amado Road, Palm Springs

Thousands of spectators will gather along palm tree-lined streets to cheer on and support local organizations, activists, and themed floats that pass down historic Palm Canyon Drive. The parade is scheduled to last two and a half hours. Enjoy emcee commentary as parade contingents pass by official reviewing stands:

•            Broadcast reviewing stand: Eight4Nine Restaurant & Lounge at 849 North Palm Canyon Drive

•            Deaf Pride reviewing stand with Sign Language interpretation: near Amado Road and North Palm Canyon Drive

•            Main reviewing stand: Granvia Valmonte and Palm Canyon Drive

Sunday Brunch with a View

Eight4Nine Restaurant & Lounge, Trio Restaurant & Roly China Fusion will all be offering Sunday Champaign Brunch and Pride viewing parties. Visit their websites for reservations and info.

Pride Festival Downtown Palm Springs

Saturday Nov. 6 11 a.m.–11 p.m.

Sunday Nov. 7 11 a.m.-6 p.m.

A street fair, a music festival of diverse artists, and a gathering place, the Pride festival is a celebration of all that is LGBTQ in Palm Springs. Sip, sashay, and celebrate in several downtown Palm Springs open-air event venues!

Arenas Road Gayborhood Block Party

Saturday Nov. 6 6-11:30 p.m.

Arenas Road between Indian Canyon Drive and Calle Encilia, Palm Springs

This block party is a signature event focused on the heart of the Palm Springs gayborhood … a celebration of Pride as well as the symbolic embrace of Arenas Road. Favorite LGBTQ bars and local businesses will be packed to the rafters and spilling out onto the streets for the biggest free LGBTQ street party in Palm Springs. The streets will be packed with Pride revelers, dancers and an open-air beverage lounge. The block party invites residents and visitors to discover (and rediscover) all that Arenas Road has to offer.

With COVID-19 restrictions, organizers encourage participants to follow any government restrictions and advice relating to COVID-19.