Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 7 / 15 February 2018

Primetime Pride

On the Town

Members of the SF Gay Men's Chorus sang at the Gilbert Baker memorial celebration at the Castro Theatre. Photo: Rick Gerharter
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You know it's going to be a major Pride Month when the first official Pride party is in May! Well, Michelle Meow 's newest SF Pride fundraising event, held on Wednesday, May 31 at Hawker Fare, attracted all kinds of supporters, including Lisa Williams, Marsha Levine, George Ridgely, Audrey Joseph, David Currie, Jethro Patalinghug, former Pride Executive Director Teddy Basham-Witherington, Tita Aida, AsiaSF's Larry Hashbarger, 2017 Grand Marshal Alex U. Inn, 2017 Lifetime Achievement Honoree Dr. Marcy Adelman, and a host of friends from Serramonte Ford and Workday.

Even Michelle's lovely and charming mother and stepfather were in the house. To raise additional funds, Michelle auctioned off several original portraits of LGBT leaders in San Francisco. We've never visited the Asian continent, but now we feel like we've at least gotten a genuine taste of the rich culture of Laos and Thailand with culinary delights and commentary from Michelin starred chef James Syhabout and musical performances by Tookta. This celebration of diversity had it all.

The second day of June brought Mark Rhoades ' 10th anniversary PG&E Pride party at the Bentley Exchange benefiting the Richmond/Ermet Aid Foundation. This San Francisco PR pro and gay socialite always hosts a top-notch event, attended by the cream of San Francisco's LGBT Community, and this year's attendees included Chris Carnes, Richard Sablatura, Jim Wright, Frank Woo, Janis Callon, Linda Scaparotti, Leslie Katz, Lindsay Bolton, Ken Henderson, Joe Seiler, Marissa Burger, Christopher Meza, Mario Diaz, Marcy Adelman, Derek Barnes, Amy Karle, Andrea Shorter, Ari Kalfayan, Paula West, Brandon Hernandez, and a dramatic entrance by Juanita More!

The event featured vogueing dancers, passed hors d'oeuvres, and generous bars with only a short program with Mark and emcee Liam Mayclem . Once again, Mark threw a party that will long be remembered.

The following night, AT&T opened their new flagship store at the cable car turn-around at Powell and Market Streets with their own Pride party, benefiting the Rainbow Honor Walk. You have to see this amazing building, completely restored to its original Baroque architectural theme after years of neglect. It now offers a spacious retail experience with the latest high-tech devices. Soaring stone arches frame glistening electronic screens; an ornate and deeply carved ceiling rises above hands-on personal demonstrations and state-of-the-art appliances.

For the month of June, seven of the next 24 Rainbow Honor Walk brass plaques to be embedded in the Castro neighborhood sidewalks are on vivid display. On hand for the unveiling and festivities were Ken McNeely, Mark Leno, Scott Wiener, Jeff Sheehy, Cammy Blackstone, Mike Smith, Anna Damiani, Justin Jones, and David Perry, Kathy Amendola, Colton Windsor, Ben Leong, Kendall Stulce, Charlotte Ruffner, and Madeline Hancock from the Rainbow Honor Walk Board of Directors. Before the month is out, get downtown to see this amazing revitalized space.


Pride party at Bently Reserve included (left to right) Marco Carvajal, Drew Herron, AJ Gonzalez and a friend, and Matthew Simon. photo: courtesy Mark Rhoades

Flags unfurled

And so, within a few days of June, the City knew Pride month was upon us.

As the iconic rainbow flags began to appear up and down Market Street to commemorate Pride Month, the community gathered at the Castro Theatre on Thursday, June 8, to pay tribute to the flag's creator, Gilbert Baker, who died on March 31.

Hosted by Dr. Jerome Goldstein & Tommy Taylor and The Diversity Foundation, the evening started with music outside the theatre by the SF Lesbian/Gay Freedom Band, a blessing inside from the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, and the induction of Gilbert into Sainthood, a distinct honor and well-deserved recognition.

Personal remembrances by Jerome, Tommy, Cleve Jones, State Senators Mark Leno and Scott Wiener , and City Supervisor Jeff Sheehy were interspersed with moving video tributes and musical performances from the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus, Thrillpeddlers, Ruby Vixen, Connie Champagne, and this singing columnist. Keeping the proceedings moving smoothly and deftly was emcee Paul Gabriel. The theatre was packed and all were invited after the program to the upstairs lobby for light food and cocktails. Thank you to all the sponsors, performers, and attendees for ensuring that the life and work of Gilbert Baker was beautifully commemorated right here where it began.

As this issue of the Bay Area Reporter hits the stands, we'll be joining James Holloway for Opening Night of the Frameline Film Festival on Thursday, June 15, featuring The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin, a joyous documentary about the legendary tale-teller. The Opening Night Gala follows at Terra Gallery and the festival runs through June 25.

For a select list of Pride events during the rest of the month, kindly refer to the nearby index we have carefully prepared to guide you through the maelstrom of activities. Return to your favorite events, try something brand new, and make an extra effort to support the organizations and individuals who make Pride month in San Francisco the big, bold, and richly diverse happening that it is.

Jose Gutierez Xtravaganza (center) led the vogue performance at the Pride party at Bently Reserve. photo: courtesy Mark Rhoades

Donna Sachet's June Pride Picks

Fri 16

San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus' The Gay Kitchen Sink with The Kinsey Sicks, Nourse Theater. $20-$45. 8pm. Also Sat. 17 at 2:30pm & 8pm. 275 Hayes Street.

Sun 18

Broadway Bares SF II: ManuStript, benefiting Richmond/Ermet Aid Foundation and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, with cast members from Hamilton, and singer Steve Grand. $45-$100. 8pm. DNA Lounge, 375 11th Street.


Thu 22

Pride Nightlife, California Academy of Sciences, with Heklina, Juanita More!, & others. 6pm. Golden Gate Park.


Fri 23

Trans March 2017, Dolores Park. 12pm.

Gay Pride Sunset Cruise. $65. 6pm. Pier 40, Brian Kent Productions.


Sat 24

Annual Pink Triangle installation. 7:30am. Twin Peaks, all volunteer project.

Gary Virginia & Donna Sachet's 19th annual Pride Brunch, honoring the Grand Marshals of Pride Parade and benefiting Positive Resource Center. $75 and up. 11am. Hotel Whitcomb.

Jungle: Pride at the Armory, 9pm-4am. 333 14th Street, with Betty Who, DJs Pagano, Danny Verde, Seth Breezy, Wayne G, & Paul Goodyear.


Juanita MORE! and her pug mascot at a recent sold out Pride party at Jones. photo: Georg Lester

Sun 25

47th Annual SF Pride Parade, from Embarcadero along Market Street to Civic Center, 10:30am-5pm.

Juanita More!'s Pride Party. $40. 12pm. Jones, 620 Jones Street.

VIP Pride Party, 2pm. City Hall Rotunda.

Mon 26

LGBT Night at AT&T Park with the SF Giants. $16-$76. 7:15pm.

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