Seven Tips To Surviving & Thriving At San Francisco Pride
The Pride of all Prides is upon us. From June 29-30, more than one million people will descend on San Francisco. With the population of the city doubling in size it can be, well, a challenge to navigate the maze of streets, hills, routes and events.
Below are seven tips and many highlights to help you survive and thrive at San Francisco Pride. For a full list of events and happenings, check out the GayCities Pride Guides.
- Request Monday Off
You'll be thankful you did.
- Don't Go to the Castro Without a Plan
Long lines for crowded bars and the steep covers leave many people stranded in the street with no place to fully enjoy the celebrations. Get there early and stake out a corner with your buds. Move in groups. Be patient.
- Drink Alcohol with Caution and Water Without
With all the shirtless bodies in such tight spaces, it gets sweaty in the clubs and in the streets. Many a reveler has had the weekend ruined by a hangover.
- Shop Beforehand
Getting the perfect outfit for Pride Sunday can be a real challenge. If you didn't plan ahead, stop by Sui Generis or Retro Fit. Vintage, consignment and new fashions mixed together make a style icon's dream closet, even if you might not be wearing too much more than shorts and a tank on Sunday.
- Wear Sunscreen
The fog city can be deceptively sunny. Since it is often cool, even in the afternoons, the sun can seem less threatening until it's too late and you've burned. Make sure you don't get anything worse than a tan line by lathering on SPF30 (at least).
- Bring Cash
Most San Francisco bars are cash only, plus the waiting time for a drink will be less if you fanny pack it. However, don't bring too much cash.
- Diversify Your Adventures
Yes, the Castro and the slightly rougher gay bars in SOMA are great, and they will be packed all weekend. But remember there's so much more to San Francisco, from the Golden Gate Bridge to Baker Beach to the restaurant scene in the Mission and shopping in Union Square. Take some time to explore the town as a whole. You'll enjoy the bars and clubs all the more because of it.
Now that you are properly prepared, here are a few special events we recommend.