Disneyland to Host First-Ever Official Pride Nite in the U.S.

In June, Disneyland will host its first LGBTQ+ Pride Nite. Gay Days Anaheim’s originator, Eddie Shapiro, said Disney is hosting the event after 25 years of progress.

The event will feature unique menus, souvenirs, ballrooms, picture sessions, and a parade with Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, and other colorful characters. Tickets cost $139. From April 18, Magic Key yearly pass holders could buy tickets and from April 20, the public could.

Not Speaking Up

Disney was criticized for not opposing Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law. This rule prevents kindergarten through third-grade instructors from discussing sexual orientation and gender identity, which has caused controversy.

Disney has been criticized for not opposing a controversial measure that LGBTQ+ activists say might harm vulnerable children. Shapiro says Pride Nite “addresses some of the harm.”

According to a release, Disneyland’s Pride Nite will connect LGBTQ+ people and others.

Independent organizations have held Disneyland gay-themed days for years. Since 1998, Shapiro has hosted Gay Days Anaheim, a bi-annual event that draws tens of thousands nationwide and beyond.

Disney California Adventure and Disneyland host the annual LGBTQ+ event. In conference rooms near Disney hotels, Gay Days speakers discuss LGBTQ+ problems.

A Shift

Since hosting Gay Days Anaheim, Shapiro noted Disney’s expansion. He recognized the event’s early learning curve.

He adds that when he and his crew started, Disneyland personnel would provide guests who unwittingly donned red shirts that day a white T-shirt or a refund if they objected to Gay Days. Disney has improved diversity in recent years, learning from past missteps.

Shapiro stated that Disneyland’s Pride Nite promotes community and is open to anyone. Pride Nite’s announcement has both praise and criticism.

Shapiro said many people enjoy the company’s awareness and welcome to the LGBTQ+ community. They feel welcomed at a place where they badly want to feel safe, he continued.

This article appeared in NewsHouse and has been published here with permission.