What to expect at Key West Pride

The tropical islands of the Florida Keys offer fun and tranquility in equal measure

Thousands are set to descend on the tropical paradise of the Florida Keys next month for the fun and colour of Key West Pride. Exhilarating fun and challenges are planned for visitors to the event.

The annual Florida Keys festival, set for 8-12 June, salutes diversity in one of America's leading gay and lesbian getaway spots.

The celebration on the subtropical island of Key West features events and activities such as late-night drag shows, daytime pool parties, on-the-water adventures including snorkelling, kayaking and paddle boarding, a rainbow bike parade, a burlesque performance and a one-of-a-kind trolley tour documenting the LGBT community's impact on Key West history and culture.

Gay Pride Key West

Other highlights include a 10k relay for tutu-wearing runners and walkers and pageants to select Mr., Miss and Ms. Key West Pride.

At the festival you”ll also find the 2016 Stoli Original Cocktail Challenge. Kicking off with a gala on Wednesday night, events include contestant runoffs on Friday and the final round on Saturday from 7-10 p.m. The contest features regional winners from LGBT bars in 15 North American cities, all competing to create an original Key West cocktail that reflects the island's creativity and spirit.

The final round will take place on an open-air stage on Duval Street, hosted by Broadway actor and former 'Queer Eye' television personality Jai Rodriguez and Stoli USA's national LGBT ambassador Patrik Gallineaux, with acclaimed Key West female impersonator 'Sushi' among the celebrity judges.

Gay Hotel in Key West

The winner is to be honorary grand marshal of the 2016 Pride Parade. The all-welcome procession will feature a 100-foot section of Key West's famed sea-to-sea rainbow flag, and begin at 5 p.m. on 12 June, proceeding up Duval Street from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean. Following the parade, revellers can meet for Stoli's official after-parade party at La Te Da on Duval Street.

Travel to the Florida Keys for Key West Pride
OutOfOffice.com (0207 157 1570) has seven nights in the Florida Keys from £1,579 per person, including return direct Virgin Atlantic flights from London Heathrow to Miami, five nights at The Westin Key West Resort and Marina during Key West Pride followed by two nights at the Key Largo Bay Marriott Beach Resort and car hire for the duration. The price is based on an 8 June 2016 departure for two adults travelling and sharing four-star accommodation.

Event information and schedule: www.keywestpride.org or www.gaykeywestfl.com

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