Pull out your rainbow flags and join the region in celebrating Pride Month!
June is known as Pride Month worldwide and is commonly when LGBTQ communities come together and celebrate their hard won freedoms.
The Great Rivers & Routes region is proud to celebrate and promote it’s ties to LGBTQ+ organizations and businesses. Be sure to show your support to our locally owned and operated LBGTQ businesses highlighted here.
Mom Said No/Mississippi Hippie, Alton
Remember the days when you really, really, really absolutely had to HAVE that Brady Bunch lunch box? Or what about a Starsky & Hutch model car? And then Mom said ‘NO!’
Now you can have those wonderful, amazing toys that you were denied growing up at the “Mom Said NO!” gift shop housed in the historic Mineral Springs Hotel in downtown Alton.
The store is chock full of colorful memorabilia that takes guests back in time to the days of Archie comics, the Brady Bunch and more. Mom Said No is partnered in the same space with tje Mississippi Hippie store, both owned by Fred Pollard.
"The vibe here is very fun," Pollard says. "People come in here and they laugh and have a good time because they see things they enjoyed as children. The best part is when families come in and someone asks what Hacky Sack is or Colorforms. Then the parents can tell their children all about them."
Pictured above, Fred Pollard store owner on right with Erich Fechner on left.
The stores are a mix of hippy, gothic and counter culture, Pollard notes. "People who have their own style feel comfortable here."
Located at 301 E. Broadway Open Wednesday & Thursday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday & Saturday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday Noon to 4 p.m.
Picture This & More, Alton
Looking for the perfect frame for a photo or print? What about discovering great art highlighting the beauty of southwest Illinois?
Picture This & More has all that and well … more.
Owner Quint Long says the store is primarily a framing shop but it also houses a local artist gallery specializing in local interest art. From bluffs, to rivers, eagles to local monuments, the downtown Alton storefront showcases some up and coming artistic talents in the Great Rivers & Routes region.
“We have photography, some paintings, metal work and even puzzles,” Long says of his shop. Long recently relocated the business from North Alton to the downtown location.
“We are more visible to people in this location and we see more tourism related business. This has been a good move for us,” he notes.
Picture This & More is located at 17 N. Broadway St. It is open Monday -Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Ragin Cajun Piano Bar, Alton
Dueling pianos is a thing and the Ragin Cajun Piano Bar on 3rd Street in Alton has it going on!
Spend time enjoying the every-day Mardi Gras vibe along with Cajun-style grub, playful décor and, of course, live piano players.
Located at 201 W. 3rd St. It is open Monday – Thursday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m., Friday and Saturday from Noon to 3 a.m. and Sunday from Noon to 2 a.m.
Bubby & Sissy’s, Alton
Hit the dance floor at Bubby & Sissy’s, a renowned Gay Bar located in the heart of Alton’s entertainment district. Known for its celebration of diversity in a ‘fun, safe atmosphere’, the nightclub also is home to weekend Drag Shows.
Enjoy DJ-driven music during the week and acclaimed Drag Shows on Saturdays. An outdoor patio is also available for anyone who wants a break from the fun.
Located at 602 Belle St. Open Tuesday – Thursday 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Friday & Saturday 5 p.m. to 3 a.m.; Sunday 3 p.m. to 2 a.m.