St. Pete Pride is coming up at the end of the month, but one Tampa Bay establishment is celebrating gay pride in their own way one week early. City Side (3703 Henderson Blvd., Tampa) ushers in the very first “City Side Pride,” an entire weekend of events, starting on Friday, June 20.
This undertaking is something owner Jim Encke had wanted to do since he became the venerable nightspot’s proprietor earlier this year. Back in April, Encke told us, “I can’t wait for June,” and the City Side Pride celebrations. Telling us a little more, he said, “It’s going to be one amazing block party.”
The weekend’s events start off just after the work week ends for most of us on Friday, June 20. Kim Roberts is a singer I’ve profiled multiple times in my What’s Hot Central Florida column. She is well-known as a singer and songwriter, performing her own songs as well as covers of her favorite classic hits. Jim Encke has raved about her to us in the past, calling her “an outstanding musical talent.” She will kick off the weekend with a special three-hour intimate performance, starting at 6 p.m. At 10 p.m., Raven Lunatique will be hosting her burlesque show. The burlesque show was another addition by Encke when he took over the reins at City Side and the monthly theme night has been very well-received.
On Saturday, June 21, the weekend KJ, Stormin’ Normie, will be hosting karaoke all night long, beginning at 9 p.m. At 10 p.m., there will be a break from singing so Miss Manny, the bingo hostess, and the current Miss City Side, Anjila Cavalier, can host and perform in a special City Side Pride-themed drag show.
Finally, on Sunday, June 21, Hunter and his sexy dance troupe will be dancing from 5 p.m. well into the evening. Singer Jennifer Real, a new addition to the City Side entertainment roster, will be performing on the patio from 7 p.m. until 10 p.m.
Last we talked to Jim at City Side, he asked customers to drop by so he can pleasantly surprise them with the renovations and changes that have been instituted the last few months. This is a perfect time to check out the new City Side and see what people have been raving about these past couple of months.