imageEven though it’s been a tough year for Atlanta Pride, the group revitalized its community partnerships resulting in a slew of events leading toward the big gay festival.

First, there was Papi’s Countdown to Pride each month at Las Margaritas. Starting tonight, Stride Into Pride finds the Pride Committee teamed up with six different gay hotspots every Wednesday all the way up to the big Oct. 31-Nov. 1 weekend in Piedmont Park.

Each Wednesday celebrates a different color of the rainbow flag. Woofs gets the Red Party started this week at 7 p.m. with trivia, giveaways, Pride Shooters and more surprises. Next week brings the Orange Party at Mixx, and the Wednesdays just keep coming.

Other Pride partners in the event series are Bellissima (Oct. 7, Yellow Party); Heretic (Oct. 14, Green Party); Blake’s (Oct. 21, Blue Party); Jungle (Oct. 28, Purple Party).

Also on Wednesdays starting in October, Dine Out With Pride provides a way to load up the tummy before the Stride parties. HomeGrown Restaurants gives 15 percent of your bill to Pride at a different one of their eateries each week. The first one is at Stella on Oct. 7. Subsequent Wednesdays take Pride supporters to Doc Chey’s-Emory, Osteria 832, and Doc Chey’s-Virginia Highland.

“Yes, the events raise money we need to keep the festival free, but mainly we want people to start getting excited about the festival,” says J. Sheffield, Pride’s event manager. “It’s almost here.”

The Pride Luau, a Hawaiian-themed fundraiser, is scheduled for Oct. 10 at the Artmore Hotel, and the festival gets a warm welcome at the Official Pride Kick-Off Party with DJ Martin Fry at the Georgia Aquarium on Oct. 30. Tickets for the kick-off party are available now.