Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 8 / 22 February 2018

SF panel grants permits to Pink Party and Trans, Dyke marches

Castro Street is jam-packed during Pink Saturday 2012. Photo: Rick Gerharter

Castro Street is jam-packed during Pink Saturday 2012. Photo: Rick Gerharter

A city panel that oversees street closures has granted permits to the organizers of this year’s Pink Party in the Castro the Saturday of Pride weekend as well as to the Trans and Dyke marches.

At its meeting this morning (Thursday, May 28), the Interdepartmental Staff Committee on Traffic and Transportation, known as ISCOTT, unanimously approved the applications for the trio of events, which have all made changes this year.

The Trans March will be closing down Dolores Street between 18th and 20th Streets between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m. Friday, June 26. Due to the ongoing renovation of Dolores Park, the event has been moved into the street this year.

“In order to keep the park’s new grass nice and clear we decided to have a street event,” Trans March organizer Dylan Martin told the committee, composed of representatives from the city’s police, fire, health, and traffic departments.

The event will kick off with a youth-elder brunch at 11 a.m provided by Openhouse, the LGBT senior services agency, and youth agency LYRIC, which stands for the Lavender Youth Recreation and Information Center. Main stage events will begin at 3 p.m. and the march itself will start at 6 p.m.

Organizers expect up to 7,000 people to attend throughout the day, with roughly 2,500 people to take part in the march. It will end this year at United Nations Plaza.

Dyke March sets new time, route

As previously reported by the Bay Area Reporter, this year’s Dyke March has been moved to an earlier start time to coincide with the new hours for this year’s Pink Party celebration in the Castro Saturday, June 27.

The female-centric event will kick off that day with a noon rally at 18th and Dolores streets near Dolores Park. Organizers plan to close off Dolores Street between 17th and 20th Street between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. to accommodate the event and march lineup.

Marchers will leave 18th and Dolores at 3:30, head north on Dolores, then east on 17th Street and north on Valencia Street before finally going west on 16th Street into the Castro. Attendees will arrive in the Castro by 5 to join the Pink Party.

The larger event is under the auspices of the LGBT Community Center this year, which is working with event producer Eliote Durham and her company on the logistics and planning for it. In February the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence decided to end their oversight of the party, which has been marred by increasing violence in recent years, and later voted not to allow the center use of the Pink Saturday moniker for this year’s party.

City officials, responding to community input, pushed for the earlier start and end times for the event. It will run from 3 to 8 p.m. this year, with street closures in the city’s gay neighborhood beginning at noon.

Organizers are hopeful they can have Market Street between Eureka and Noe streets open to traffic again between 8:30 and 9 p.m. Castro Street and the surrounding side streets should reopen shortly thereafter.

“Our permit goes to an 11 p.m. end time to allow for a safety buffer so the load out can happen,” Durham told the ISCOTT members.

Food service at trucks and tents along Market Street will end at 7 p.m., and the main stage at the intersection of Market and Castro streets will shut down at 7:30 p.m.

“This is better. This will help,” said Sergeant Bernie Corry, who represents the San Francisco Police Department on ISCOTT.

The number of entrance gates has been decreased to three this year, with everyone going to Pink Party given a wristband. It is another new element being added this year to foster a safer experience for attendees.

“It is so people don’t think they can come in and make problems,” said Durham. “This will make it feel more of a celebration, so it is not just a party that doesn’t celebrate the community.”

— Matthew S. Bajko, May 28, 2015 @ 2:24 pm PST
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