Brewery in Baltimore, Ken Stanek Photography/Visit Baltimore Chop Suey Books in Richmond Capital Pride Parade, Washington.org AT THE FOREFRONT OF POLITICS AND CULTURE, THE CAPITAL REGION IS BOTH DIVERSE AND WELCOMING. VIBRANT CITIES AND LUSH LANDSCAPES MAKE THE IDEAL LOCATION FOR A ROMANTIC HOLIDAY, AN ENERGETIC NIGHT ON THE TOWN OR AN UNFORGETTABLE CELEBRATION. WASHINGTON, DC Explore neighbourhoods like Dupont Circle, synonymous with gay life in the nation’s capital; and dance the night away at a variety of clubs offering beats for every musical taste. Or visit during Capital Pride, a weeklong pride celebration that draws more than 250,000 people. BALTIMORE, MARYLAND Check out the Mount Vernon neighbourhood, the centre of the waterfront city’s LGBTQ community. Tour the film locations of director and Baltimore native John Waters; or pay tribute to the city’s most famous diva — Divine — at his gravesite or the larger-than-life statue at the American Visionary Art Museum. RICHMOND, VIRGINIA Virginia’s forward-thinking capital city has more than 900 restaurants and nightclubs, including Babes of Carytown, a hotspot for drinks, volleyball and dancing. Delve into Richmond’s dynamic LGBTQ arts and entertainment scene at a show by Richmond Triangle Players, the only performing arts group in the mid-Atlantic dedicated to LGBTQ-themed theatre. NORFOLK, VIRGINIA Granby Street and surrounding neighbourhoods are home to several popular gay bars, including MJ’s Tavern, a favourite hangout with nightly drink and food specials. Catch the only pride boat parade from the banks of the Elizabeth River at Norfolk’s Town Point Park. CHARLOTTESVILLE, VIRGINIA Nightlife opportunities abound in Charlottesville, from lively Impulse Gay Social Club, a hub for dancing, karaoke, and drag, burlesque and male revue shows, to cosy Escafé, known for locally sourced fare and live music. FREDERICK, MARYLAND A lively annual pride festival (more than 5,000 attended last year’s event) and a growing roster of LGBTQ-owned businesses make Frederick a worthy stop. Get your groove on at The Lodge in nearby Boonsboro, where drag and burlesque shows pack the club every Friday evening.
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