Drag Now. Drag Forever.

Drag is not a crime. Drag is art. Drag is entertainment and has existed for hundreds of years and is part of everyday life. Performers can rest knowing they will be judged by their look and personas and celebrated for serving realness, elegance, and glamor, not just by wit and originality. Drag Queens will be judged by their ability to bring the community together and for their contributions to our city.

A year-round eleganza extravaganza, Palm Springs celebrates all. We embrace the authentic and support tea-free and shade-free zones. We declare, for all those who are under attack, including straight allies and entertainers, that in this anti-drag, anti-LGBTQ+ era, this city, in this day, in this time, will be a city of sanctuary and freedom of expression of all forms.

Palm Springs Pride president and CEO Ron deHarte said, ‘Drag Now. Drag Forever.’ is a theme that calls on the community to unite and support the drag community. Drag is not a crime. Our country has a rich history of drag as an artistic expression, standard of activism, and the backbone of fundraising in the community. We call on everyone to support the drag community and fight all anti-LGBTQ+ bills that threaten the freedom and equality of all.”

“Facing a legislative landscape of increased attacks on members of the LGBTQ+ community coupled with physical violence, we must gather to support one another and be unified against fear and intimidation. The fight for freedom continues,” added deHarte.

Pride Week, presented by the City of Palm Springs, is the largest annual event in Palm Springs. It’s also the largest multi-day gathering of LGBTQ+ people in the Coachella Valley. In 2022, official Pride Week events attracted 200,000 attendees and generated a $38 million direct economic impact for area hotels, shops, restaurants, and other local businesses.

A traditional slate of Pride events to celebrate the power and resiliency of the LGBTQ+ community is scheduled for the 37th annual LGBTQ+ celebration on November 3 – 5. The Pride Parade and Festival will return to downtown Palm Springs, featuring multiple stages of live entertainment and an exhibitor marketplace.

Details for Pride Week activities can be found online at www.pspride.org

PS Pride 2023 Parade Grand Marshals

Grand Marshal – James “Gypsy” Haake

Under the Palm Springs Pride theme, Drag Now. Drag Forever. one of the oldest living drag queens in the world, James Gypsy Haake will be recognized as the 2023 Grand Marshal.

Haake started as a chorus boy on Broadway in 1951, and for the next sixteen years, he danced in road tours. Dancers traveling from show to show are called gypsies. While touring, Chita Rivera would call him “Gypsy,” and the nickname stuck.

He lived a poised hetero life, and by the time he was 30, he was too old to dance and wasn’t getting any work. He was a waiter in a New York cocktail bar until 1968 when he entertained again in a new Upper East Side cabaret called “Gypsy’s.”

By 1978, Disco was widespread, and the cabaret audience faded. Gypsy moved to West Hollywood, and by 1981, he was the Master of Ceremonies in a new cabaret that opened in Beverly Hills called La Cage Aux Folles. The show was hugely successful, and Gypsy soon became a household name amongst movie producers and actors. After a few years, Mel Brooks, with his wife Anne Bancroft, discovered Gypsy, and at the age of 51, he was cast in his first feature film, To Be or Not To Be.

With his outrageous dress and humor when hosting the cabaret, Gypsy became besties with some of the biggest stars in Hollywood. By the time La Cage Aux Folles closed in 1993, he was cast in numerous film and television shows, including The Morning After, Troop Beverly Hills, Clifford, Married With Children, Dynasty, Baywatch Nights, Making of A Male Model, Hollywood Wives, Max Headroom, The Fall Guy, Webster, Tanner 88, and Mike Hammer: Murder Takes All.

After years touring with a female impersonator company, Gypsy, at the age of 68, was called to the stage by producer Dan Gore (Oscar’s Palm Springs). Gypsy hosted Gore’s successful Carnival Cabaret in Lake Tahoe from 2000-2004. Gypsy continued to work with Gore on traveling shows and events and reopened the Lake Tahoe show in 2008 until he retired in 2009. In 2014, Gore called on the 82-year-old Gypsy to come out of retirement to host a female impersonator show at Oscar’s, which ran until 2019.  

During the run in Palm Springs, he caught the eye of Miley Cyrus and appeared in her hit music video, “Younger Now.” At 88, Gypsy returned to the stage and hosted Oscar’s 2021 New Year’s Eve with another generation of queens, Varla Jean Merman, Sherry Vine, and the late Heklina. Gypsy was featured in the 2022 book Legends of Drag, and recently, appeared in the Studio One Forever documentary, telling his stories of the Hollywood nightclub. 

James Gypsy Haake was Born in Morristown, New Jersey, on February 14, 1932. At 91, Gypsy remains active and continues entertaining folks in his home community of Westchester in Los Angeles.

Celebrity Grand Marshal – Trixie Mattel

Trixie Mattel is an American singer, actor, drag queen, and recognized “Skinny Legend.” Trixie is the winner of “RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” season 3. She is also a Billboard Heatseekers #1 charting recording artist (One Stone, 2018), a wildly successful touring act, and one half of a comic duo with Katya on YouTube.

In 2019, Trixie worked the festival circuit as the subject of a bio documentary, Trixie Mattel: Moving Parts, debuted her cosmetics company Trixie Cosmetics, and released her Skinny Legend comedy special. She also released a New York Times best-selling book with Katya called Trixie and Katya’s Guide to Modern Womanhood and started a podcast called The Bald and the Beautiful with Katya.

Since then, Mattel has partnered with Fender, worked with Integrity Toys to release the “Trixie” doll, was nominated for a Critics Choice Award for her One Night Only comedy special, and appeared as one of the judges for the hit Paramount+ Queen of the Universe singing competition.

In 2022, she starred in her Discovery+ reality renovation show, Trixie Motel. She released her double LP, The Blonde and Pink Albums, to acclaim from Rolling Stone, Billboard, People, Vogue, NPR, and more, as well as performance slots on Jimmy Kimmel Live! and at Austin City Limits. 2023 saw Trixie perform at the Stagecoach Festival, get nominated for two GLAAD Media Awards as well as two Critics Choice Awards, unveil the Trixie and Katya Live livestream, grace the cover of Los Angeles Magazine, and release multi-million-viewed video content via her YouTube channel.

Community Grand Marshal – Ethylina Canne

She started in San Francisco in the mid-90s at the legendary San Francisco drag club Trannyshack rebranded as the T-shack in 2014. Ethylina Canne is an actress, hostess, comedian, entertainer, and officiant who has appeared all over the globe for the past 30 years. She has graced the stages of the world-famous Laugh Factory and co-hosted the Equality Awards and Steve Chase Awards with funnyman Leslie Jordan. She’s an avid supporter of DAP Health, Alliance for Housing and Healing, HRC, and many other organizations that help communities and their members in need.

Ethylina’s community work has been recognized with honors that include “Best in Drag” 2016, the DAP “Everyday Hero Award” 2018, and GED Magazine’s “OUTstanding Drag Diva” 2020. She is the creator of the monthly drag bingo “Ethyl’s Place,” which has raised over $30,000 since it began 18 months ago for different charitable causes.

On her 50th birthday, the Mayor and City Council of Cathedral City declared July 9th, 2023, “Ethylina Canne Day” with a city proclamation.

Ethylina is also a Tupperware Lady who resides in sunny Palm Springs.