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The Castro prides itself on being open and hospitable to all, but one look around the neighborhood's nightlife scene makes it clear that the vast majority of bars and events, while welcoming to people of all genders and sexual orientations, primarily cater to gay men. We wanted to know whether the world's first distinct gayborhood still feels hospitable to lesbians—and what might have led to the lack of spaces for them.
Gathering spaces for gay women in San Francisco used to be more prevalent, but they were never numerous, says award-winning playwright Mercilee Jenkins, a longtime Castro resident.
Jenkins says a few nightlife options still remain, but none of them are exclusively gay spaces. That used to be such a landmark place. Everyone used to go there. It was a community resource. Nonetheless, Jenkins admits that the Castro "was always predominantly gay men—and I think that economics plays a big factor in that. Andrea Aiello, executive director of the Castro CBD, agrees with Jenkins, noting that the gender pay gap likely plays a role.
The influx of wealth to the Mission hasn't helped, either, as many of that neighborhood's gay spaces, from the Lexington Club to Latino-oriented gay bar Esta Noche, have disappeared. The Lexington Club's space is now a high-end cocktail bar called Wildhawk, which caters to a mixed crowd.
However, an anonymous source told Hoodline that a month ago, a bunch of lesbians banded together, walked in and reclaimed their old space. Whether that takeover has stuck, we don't know. For example, if you go to Badlands on a crowded night, there may be only five women there and not all of them are gay. So it's a very small pool," Toni explained.
But, basically, if you are a lesbian looking for love in the city, you are not going to meet anyone in a bar, unless you go to a lesbian-specific event. Lips : A dance party for women and their friends at the Castro's The Cafe, held the first Saturday of every month.
What do you think of the lesbian scene in the Castro? Does it still exist or was it ever really there at all? Let us know in the comments. From a literary estate to a seal colony, and from the canopy of the redwoods to of course wine tasting, Hoodline's Bay Area Day Trips series is enjoying the pleasures of Sonoma County this week.
The free, one-day Mission District music and food bash is back, but with a Stern Grove-style reservation system that behooves you to reserve a spot fast. Bright Star Pilates studio is now open at Sanchez St. By Alisa Scerrato - Published on July 09, San Francisco Castro Mission. Tara Toni left with her fiancee Jennifer Berg. About 16 hours ago.
Joe Kukura. About 18 hours ago. San Francisco Bay Area day trips: Summertime in Sonoma County From a literary estate to a seal colony, and from the canopy of the redwoods to of course wine tasting, Hoodline's Bay Area Day Trips series is enjoying the pleasures of Sonoma County this week. Laila Weir. Aug 12, Aug 11, Steven Bracco.
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