Pride Fort Lauderdale Announces 2025 Pride, But Cash Struggles Remain

Pride Fort Lauderdale 2021. Photo by JR Davis.

Pride Fort Lauderdale has announced its event for 2025, which is set to take place Feb. 9. But it's unclear if they will have to cash to do so.

Just weeks ago, they told a volunteer who had donated $1,000 to the 2024 event that the organization was broke.

“You’re asking us to bleed money from a stone.”

Those are the candid words of Robyn Ludy, the volunteer director for Pride Fort Lauderdale (PFL). OutSFL has exclusively obtained texts in which she bluntly discusses PFL’s dire situation.

“They just canceled and took the money,” John Michael Gordon told OutSFL. He made the donation in March 2023, and many people heard him say it was for the 2024 weekend. Despite that, Gordon acknowledges the money was given without being specifically earmarked.

Ludy, in a statement to OutSFL, remembers the moment differently. “I was in attendance the day John Michael donated to Pride Fort Lauderdale, however there was no mention of where or how the donation needed to be spent.”

Financial Band-Aids

Gordon is sharing his insight into the organization he calls “chaotic.” In his text exchanges with Ludy, he explains that since the party didn’t happen, he should be refunded. She invoked February’s Pride On the Drive as being equivalent.

“But [Pride] is happening just differently. We are hosting two events at Hunters, and we are having a Bear Party.”

Those events and others, like a monthly Bingo night, are part of their Pride365 initiative, with a goal of raising money and their profile with smaller events throughout the year. But those don’t appear to be doing the trick.

“Unfortunately, we haven’t made enough money to produce a festival,” Ludy texted. “But those events are our Pride this year.” Currently, their website doesn’t feature any sponsors.

Gordon says even when they do manage to pull off a smaller event, it’s by the skin of their teeth. “They are very unorganized every single event, every time.”

Behind the Opaque Curtain

Most information about how PFL works comes from people who, like Gordon, have left the organization.

OutSFL has made multiple requests, verbally and in writing, for simple information like how to attend their meetings, meeting minutes, and who sits on the board. All requests have been ignored or come with promises of information “soon,” only to go unfulfilled.

According to ProPublica, PFL’s 2022 990 tax filing with the IRS, PFL reports negative net assets of $-13,146. PFL didn’t hold a Pride that year, either. In 2019, the last year with a Pride before the pandemic, they reported $252,195 in net assets.

The lack of transparency is said to be what motivated Tito’s Vodka and CAN/Midland to pull their sponsorships before the 2023 Pride of the Americas. Within a month, the entire board and the executive director resigned, leaving PFL President Miik Martorell to reshape the organization.

He has said he will report what the law requires, which isn’t much.

On The Road

For two years in a row, PFL leadership has been nowhere near South Florida leading up to their major events. In January 2023, as sponsors were fleeing, board members were resigning and their festival was struggling to get across the finish line, Martorell and his inner circle were in New York for the U.S. Association of Prides.

This year, two weeks before Pride On the Drive, Martorell, new Executive Director Ernie Yuen, Ludy and others were at the same event in Las Vegas. Ludy, in her texts with Gordon, says Martorell paid for the bulk of the junket on his own while reinforcing the cries of poverty.

“... The money you donated to Pride isn’t funding this trip. Miik is. We had a lot of expenses with Bingo and Halloween and keeping afloat.”


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Phone: 954-514-7095
Hours: Monday - Friday 9AM - 2PM


2520 N. Dixie Highway,
Wilton Manors, FL 33305



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