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RAINBOW FLAg PROUD TO FLY THE RAINBOW FLAg


The Rainbow Flag flies proudly high from the top of The Blackpool Tower each June to mark our annual Pride festival, which this year takes place on 9th and 10th June; and whenever you visit Blackpool as part of a LGBT family, couple, a group, or as a single, you’re sure of a famous northern warm welcome.


And whether you’re looking to chill out on a cultural break, have some family fun at the resort’s top attractions or party the night away, then Blackpool is the ideal place to be.


NIgHT ON THE TOWN? With the town motto of ‘Progress’ Blackpool has always been a mecca for gay and gay-friendly nightlife – in fact you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to venues for a great night out.


Do not miss the night Joan Collins said ‘you could show London a thing or two’ and make time for the legendary Funny Girls – where the drag queens take to the stage for a show with no equal, in a venue like no other. Set in the gorgeous surroundings of the former Odeon Cinema, you can add a pre-show dining experience to really make an evening of it and the party continues late into the night.


For cabaret and dancing try out The mardi Gras or Kaos on Queen Street and make time for a visit to Lucy’s @ Tobago on Talbot Road. For one of the country’s oldest and best loved gay nightclubs, there’s The Flamingo, a multi-levelled, clubbers paradise.


cULTURE A gO-gO


Grundy Art Gallery on Queen Street is a great place to start your Blackpool explorations – with a changing programme of exhibitions fea- turing modern and traditional art across all mediums in architectural surroundings that are worth the trip themselves.


And if you love stunning high-end architecture, make your next stop the beautiful Winter Gardens, Tower Ballroom & Circus, the Grand Theatre and make time for a trip to gorgeous Stanley Park – recently restored with heritage lottery money and a fantastic place for a romantic stroll or picnic.


EAT YOUR HEART OUT! Speaking of food – whatever tickles your tastebuds, we’ve got something to suit in Blackpool. For a quick lunch or a coffee, try the stylish continental cafes of St John’s in the heart of the town, or sample the beautiful new mazzei coffee shop in the newly restored Winter Gardens.


For delicious dishes in sophisticated settings book a table at the new Winter Gardens Empress Grill, run by award-winning heathcotes Outside, or sample the elegant delights of Jali – quite possibly the best Indian meal you’ll ever eat.


RATHER SHOP?


Sample all the delights of the high Street in the houndshill or pay a visit to Blueberries boutique department store on Topping Street – three fabulous floors of high-end fashion featuring all your favourite designers from vivienne Westwood to Paul Smith and D&G to Diesel.


MAKE A DATE! If you love magic, circus and new variety with more sequins and high camp then you can shake a stick at, then you simply must make a date with Blackpool during February’s annual Showzam Festival. Check out the unusual, sexy, weird and wonderful Carnival Ball in the unparalleled surroundings of the Tower Ballroom – vintage chic meets mad magicians, feathered femmes and dancing the night away - a unique night you’ll never forget.


Once a year, in early June, Blackpool moves to the beat of Blackpool Pride featuring an array of top singers and cabaret acts on 4 stages, a huge market area and a colourful


carnival parade. The action centres around the beautiful North Pier – the most architecturally stunning of the three Blackpool Piers and a perfect and unique location.


Don’t miss a visit in between September and November when the world-famous Illuminations shine bright for 66 nights making 2012 a special year for the Lights as they celebrate their Centenary year. Enjoy features from designer Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, including the gorgeous new Theatre D’Amour, venus Reborn and Decodance plus a major new feature to celebrate 100 years of the Illuminations.


LOcAL KNOWLEDgE Blackpool accommodation providers will go out of their way to make your stay special. Blackpool Accommodation for Gays (BAGS) is a local group of gay and lesbian accommodation providers and a number of their establishments have received a quality grading for the standards and welcome they provide.


24 H www.visitblackpool.com H


Go to www.visitblackpool.com for more information


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