San Francisco Pride, The Ladies Owned the Night

San Francisco Pride brought a projected one million people to the streets and clubs of the city from June 29-30.

What do lesbians bring to a second date? If you are in the LGBTQ+ community, you know the once patronizing nature of the answer. Women are used to hearing the asked and answered lines over and over. But in San Francisco, a few women took the tagline and not only made it their own, they put an empowered twist on it. Uhaul is the famous long-reigning inclusive Friday night party for women who like women.

San Francisco Pride brought a projected one million people to the streets and clubs of the city from June 29-30. The festival was booming with headliners such as recording artist Amara La Negra, Pabllo Vittar, and Leikeli47. The parade on Sunday spanned just over 5 hours and brought people to Market Street to watch political powerhouses Kamala Harris and Nancy Pelosi shake hands, wave, smile, and take part in one of the country’s biggest pride festivals. A community of LGBTQ+ people and allies fused together over two beautiful sun-soaked days to celebrate exactly who we are, who we support, and who we love.

When the sun went down, San Francisco lit up with the pride lighting and came alive. With parties like Wild Things Pride, the queer party for people who love people, or Electroluxx who had the mixture of queer artists and sensationally eclectic DJ’s, there was plenty of places to revel in gay bliss. But it was the ladies that stole the nightlife show. Uhaul had three parties, in three locations over three nights. Although the destinations changed, the theme of the parties did not; come as you are, no matter who you are. Uhaul is a party for girls who like girls, and there were plenty of beautiful women, but there were also gorgeous gay men, queers as far as the eyes could see, our fabulous trans brothers and sisters, and allies ready to dance the night away. DJ’s like Von Kiss, Angie Vee, Livv and Jay Shale shook the room with their pulsing beats, while some of the nation’s best go-go dancers hypnotized us with their beat bending rhythm.

Uhaul parties have been popping up all over San Francisco for the last seven years thanks to promotor Jolene Linsangan. It wasn’t until seven months ago that Uhaul found a permanent home on Friday nights at the new Jolene’s Bar San Francisco, located at 2700 16th Street. Named after Jolene herself and co-owned with Shannon Amitin, inclusivity is paramount, and even though Uhaul parties are for the girls, everyone is welcome. Uhaul is an experience in hard dancing, strangers merging into friends, and people having a safe place to be themselves. In Jolene’s bar there is an inverted triangle drenched in neon pink that reads, “YOU ARE SAFE HERE”. Four words that not only summed up San Francisco Pride weekend but personified exactly how everyone felt at each party; safe to be themselves. Authentically, wholly, and unabashedly themselves.