A Queer Girl’s Guide to the Bay Area

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Nightmoves

Like most cities, lesbian nightlife in the Bay Area (especially since the closure of The Lexington Club) is a moving target, so let me start by saying that recently, in my experience, Castro bars/clubs Toad Hall, Badlands, QBAR and Beaux have had decent numbers of women in the mix as well as groups of straight couples. Covers tend to be small and if you’re in a group it’s probably worth bouncing around (all within a short walking distance) to see what’s looking like a good time. Another great option for your squad is Oasis, the new cabaret-style club in SOMA that hosts drag-themed events like Robyn vs Bjork, Beyonce tributes and dance parties.

On the other hand, if you looking to meet some ladies or generally suffer from FOMO you should check out the following promoters/clubs to find out what is happening and where:

Lex Presents: Look for one-off parties and benefits brought to you by the Lex

Old Dirty Bingo: Monthly event at Virgil’s with former Lex staff, bingo and prizes

Guerilla Dyke Bar: Monthly event for dykes and all their queer friends. It’s for butch dykes, femme dykes, andro-dykes, dykes of color, white dykes, cis-dykes, trans-dykes, genderqueer dykes, bi-dykes, fag-dykes, poly-dykes, monogamous dykes, single dykes, coupled dykes, married dykes, never-gonna-get-married dykes, drinking dykes, sober dykes who still love a gay bar and any other dykes you can think of. It’s a private facebook group, so you need permission from moderator to join. Do it!

Ships in the Night: Queer dance party and organization that facilitates arts-based fundraisers for local, community-oriented Bay Area projects

Swagger Like Us: Queer Hip Hop Dance Party

Hella GayMonthly mixed queer dance party

Hey Girl Hey: Monthly queer dance party that benefits local non-profits

No Sé : Oakland’s First Friday /After Party /Dance Party. Expect a mixed crowd upstairs in the gorgeous ballroom of the Starline Social Club. Food is also available downstairs.

Bad Habits: New monthly party in the Mission for LGBTQ Community, Queers, Trans, Ladies, Queens and Unicorns!

Hella Saucey: Weekly queer dance party at Qbar

UhaulMonthly party for girls who love girls

Hard French: Award-winning outdoor queer soul dance party

Mango: Monthly outdoor dance party for women and bois

Daytime Realness: Monthly campy/drag outdoor dance party

Uptown Homos: Monthly dive bar evening for all Queers, Trans Men and Women, QPOC, GenderQueer/Variant folk, Femmes, Butches, Babes and their dogs, Dykes, Lesbians, and Unicorn identified persons.

House of Babes: Femme DJ collective mainly focusing on Pride events

Wingman: Monthly night for 30+ y.o. queers. Old-school style. No waiting in line, no people slamming into each other, just drinks and queers. And maybe some cruising.

Festivals

Queer Arts Festival

SF Pride

Dyke March

Frameline

Andy Blum and Jessica Lanyadooimage09 Photos by Abby Schkloven and Lauren DeFilippo

Notable Destinations

Jessica Lanyadoo Astrologer & Psychic Medium: An astrologer and psychic medium who uses tarot and intuitive counsel to help people help themselves. She’s been wooing the Bay Area (her garden studio is in Oakland) and beyond since 1995 and has a devoted following, so you’ll need to book well in advance (though she also does sessions via phone or video chat). Be on lookout for her audiobook, Relationships 101: Your Astrological Guide to Doing Intimacy Right, out summer 2016, and her forthcoming astrology podcast, Astrology For Days, with astrologer Annabel Gat.

Andy Blum, CMT: If those San Francisco hills got you feeling sore, visit certified massage therapist and yoga instructor Andy Blum for results-oriented massage & bodywork that is a blend of trigger point and myofascial release. (She also makes her own handcrafted herbal salves which she uses on clients)

Getting Around: Try Homobiles, a non-profit 24/7 NOTAFLOF taxi service started by Tribe 8 lead singer Lynn Breedlove.

Where to stay: Try the Phoenix, a favorite amongst touring rock bands. (The pool is often the site for day parties thrown by queer party promoters)

Get out of town for a night: Boon Hotel + Spa. An hour and a half out of the city, Guerneville is a lesbian paradise: river, redwoods and relaxation. The dog-friendly Boon is chic and modern, lesbian owned and operated, has a saltwater pool, hot tub, honor bar and great restaurant in town. They also offer spa services.

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