Although Central East Florida’s LGBT offerings are not as plentiful as they are in other parts of Florida, the LGBT community in this area is rapidly growing and new activities are planned all the time.
Based out of Port St. Lucie, the non-profit organization Pride of the Treasure Coast strives to advance LGBT acceptance by playing a large role in the community and hosting numerous events throughout the year. Dining with the Stars is a fundraiser where attendees are treated to dinner and a celebrity impersonation show. For 12 years running, the non-profit has organized the annual highly anticipated PrideFest, which takes place at St. Lucie’s Civic Center in April. Admission is free and it is the Treasure Coast’s only pride festival. Pride of the Treasure Coast also regularly hosts family beach days and breakfasts.
Space Coast Pride is Brevard County’s LGBT group, founded in 2007. The Space Coast Pride Parade and Festival takes place in the Eau Gallie Arts District of Melbourne every September. Although the festival itself lasts only seven hours with live music, entertainment, food and a kids’ zone, festivities actually span an entire week and include events such as the Rainbow Run 5K, Disco Brunch, Cold Keg Nightclub Fundraiser, Colors Prom Party, Miss Space Coast Pride Pageant, Hangover Beach Party and a parade. This annual event draws people from around the world to Melbourne.
Another draw in Melbourne is the rather new Project Nebula meet up, a Space Coast LGBT community, which organizes events in an attempt to transform Florida’s culture and bring people together. It is a source of support and connection that meets at the Space Coast Wellness Center.
The Volusia Pride Festival has taken place at Old Fort Park in New Smyrna Beach since 2012. Two women (Lisa-Marie Mueller and Kristen Colesanti) had a dream for Volusia to organize a pride festival and, with the help of their community, they pulled off the first festival in just eight weeks. This new annual October event features food, entertainment and more than 70 vendors.