10 things you need to know at Atlanta Pride

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You’ve been talking about it for weeks, LGBT organizers have leaked teasers for months, and it’s finally here. So what’s left to tell about Atlanta Pride’s celebration of all that’s gay and good? This.

A few housekeeping items will keep you on top of your Pride game. It not only keeps you well-informed but makes you the go-to for the scoop, and people love that. Here are the rules, guidelines, best bets and helpful hints to make this your happiest Pride ever.

You’ll thank yourself if you remember a few items that are convenient for you and easy on all the other people around you. Check this list twice and put the knowledge next to the 29 Types of Pride Hunks, the Five Simplest Pride Dos and Don’t Ever, and of course four dozen of the Best Pride Things to do in Atlanta this weekend.

Bring cash.

 

Cash is king at Pride. Even the vendors that take cards – many don’t – prefer the green stuff because they don’t have to slow down to deal with you. If you realize later how right we were, the ATM lines are long and fees are high.

 

Tech.

 

A battery-powered phone charger keeps you posting the day away and texting each other with abandon. And you might think about earbuds to work your personal Pride playlist.

 

We are everybody.

 

Pride is only about you in the sense that you’re part of a big LGBT whole. Everyone is special, and everyone is here to have a good time. No one here is in your way or doesn’t belong or ever deserves your judgment. A little love goes a long way – even if that means turning the other cheek.

 

Entertainers.

 

Know the basics of the Pride lineup on the Coca-Cola and Bud Light stages. From the big-name acts to the up-and-comers, you don’t want to realize 30 minutes late that you missed the ones you wanted to see. Even A Great Big World can only repeat the “Say Something” lyric so many times before they give up on you.

 

Water, water, water.

 

We repeat: Water. Even in the cooler fall temps, moving around outside all day dehydrates that body of yours. Stay hydrated, whether you bring your own bottle, fill up at the drinking fountains, or buy it from vendors. Otherwise, you might find out where the medical tents are. In fact, put knowing where the medical tents are on your list anyway.

 

None of that.

 

The last thing you want is to screech on the brakes of your weekend because you brought banned items into Piedmont Park. Pets, lit cigarettes, glass containers and fires/grilling are not allowed and will send you home early.

 

Party hard, but please…

 

There are drinks for sale in the park, and everybody wants to have a good time. Don’t overdo it, for everybody else’s sake if not your own.

 

Sun essentials.

 

Speaking of being in the sun all day, show off your shades and don’t be caught wanting them. You might appreciate some sunscreen in your pack, too.

 

Sex supplies.

 

Yes, really. You never know when “we met at Pride” becomes your story, and if it does, condoms and lube packets will be your best friends when you steal away. And do steal away, people – don’t get caught with your pants down in the park. Handcuffs in this situation are not a good look.

 

Parade people.

 

 

Sound like the local expert you are when you can name the folks who put the gay in the gAy-TL as they go by, as well as the national names waving at you and why they matter. This year, the grand marshals and the honorary grand marshals are among ones to watch. You know, when you’re not eyeing the hunkiest hunks.

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