Leather Community Responds to COVID-19

Leather, queer, and kink communities around the world are responding the the COVID-19 crisis.  Click here for a frequently-updated document about the San Francisco kink community’s response, containing important information and links to other valuable resources.

In particular, numerous funds have been set up to help members of our community who are affected, either physically or economically.  Examples are the SF Queer Nightlife Fund (https://sfqueernightlifefund.org/) and the Bay Area Leather Lifeline (https://ball.leatheralliance.org), as well as Patreon and GoFundMe pages for various businesses and their employees.

Donations of any amount, to any of these funds, are deeply appreciated.  Try to imagine how much you are saving by not going out for dinner and a show, not going to bars and clubs, not using taxis or car services to get home, and not travelling to leather events in other cities.  Please give what you can afford.  Thanks!

New Committees!

Community participation is essential to the success of the LEATHER & LGBTQ Cultural District.

We therefore strongly encourage all interested folks to join the Cultural District’s various committees.  All our meetings are free and open to all.  Unless otherwise noted, all meeting locations are ADA compliant and wheelchair accessible.  Meetings and other events of importance to the Cultural District are posted on our Calendar.  See more info at the bottom of this post.

Note that during the current emergency, ALL Cultural District Committee meetings are being held online, either using Zoom or Google Hangouts, Interested community members are urged to obtain these apps for their phone or computer, although dial-in phone participation will also be provided when possible.  

For log-on information about online meetings, please refer to the “Timely Reminders” post (normally at the top of this Web site), OR to the Cultural District Calendar, OR to our Facebook Events listings.  

Here are the currently active Committees that could really use your involvement:

Arts and Culture Committee
Communications Committee
Diversity and Membership Committee
Economic Vitality Committee
Finance Committee
Governance and Legislation Committee
Land Use Committee
Past Committees
General Information about Committee Meetings and Membership

Arts and Culture Committee

This new committee advocates for creative activity in the Cultural District, organizes events, performances, public art, gallery shows, and walking tours, and explores opportunities to attract and support leather and LGBTQ artists in the Cultural District.

The next meeting of Arts and Culture Committee is set for Thursday, May 7, 2020, starting at 6:00 p.m.  Check our Calendar for logon information. An agenda will be available in advance of the meeting.

The draft minutes of the meeting of February 27, 2020 can be viewed here.  Please contact the committee chair, David Hyman, to join this new Committee, or for more info!

Communications Committee

This committee handles the Cultural District’s social media and digital presence, public relations, event promotion, and outreach to clubs, organizations, and individuals.

Their next meeting is set for Thursday, April 9, 2020, from 7:00 to 8:00, pm.  An agenda will be available in advance of the meeting.  Please contact the committee chair, Bob Brown, to join this new Committee, or for more info!

Diversity & Membership Committee

This committee recruits individual members and works with other committees to ensure diversity of membership, programs and participants.

The next meeting of the Diversity and Membership Committee is set for April 2, 2020, from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m.  An agenda will be available in advance of the meeting.  Please contact the committee chair, Beth Hunt, to join this new Committee, or for more info!

Economic Vitality Committee

This committee works to prevent displacement of existing leather and LGBTQ community groups and businesses as well as attracting new ones to the District. This also includes facilitating connections to existing city services and assistance to navigate those services.

No meetings are yet scheduled for this Committee.  If you are interested in serving, please write to info@SFLCD.org and asked to be kept informed.

Finance Committee

The Finance Committee oversees budgeting and accounting for the Cultural District, and conducts audits when necessary.  Membership is currently restricted to Directors, but for more information, contact treasurer@sflcd.org.

Governance and Legislation Committee

The Governance and Legislation Committee advocates with city planners, departments and agencies for legislation and procedures benefiting the District’s constituents.  The committee also monitors bylaw compliance and maintains the District’s policy and procedures manual, proposing and drafting any changes.

No meetings are yet scheduled for this Committee.  Please contact the committee chair, Bob Brown, to sign up, or for more info!

Land Use Committee

This committee has been in existence for over a year now, tracking construction projects and developments in the District, and working with developers and city agencies to mitigate the effects of gentrification.

The Land Use Committee also works to preserve and develop culturally and historically significant buildings, businesses, organizations, traditions, arts, events, and aesthetics, to protect tenants from displacement, and to promote affordable housing in the District.

The next Land Use Committee meeting is set for Tuesday, April 7, 2020, from 7:00 to 8:00 pm.

An agenda will be available in advance of the meetings.  Please contact the committee chair, Lexx King, for more info!

The minutes of the meeting of November 12, 2019 are available for your review here.

The minutes of the meeting of October 9, 2019 are available for your review here.

The minutes of the meeting of September 11, 2019 are available for your review here .

The minutes of the meeting of July 10, 2019 can be viewed here.

The minutes of the meeting of February 12, 2019 can be viewed here.  (You may need to ask permission to access.)

The minutes of the meeting of January 10, 2019 can be viewed here.  (You may need to ask permission to access.)

An outline of the functions and structure of the Land Use Committee can be viewed here.

Past Committees

The principle task of the Governance Committee was to draft Bylaws for the organization.  It was folded into the Legislation Committee to form the new Governance and Legislation Committee

The approved Bylaws can be viewed here; the Vision and Mission Statements for the Cultural District can be viewed here.

You can view some key questions regarding the Bylaws, which were discussed and resolved at our Facilitated Discussion on June 8, 2019. 

The minutes of the Governance Committee meetings (over a period of 18 months), and the many drafts prepared along the way, are archived and available on request.

Notes from the Legislative Committee meeting of March 7, 2018 may be viewed here.

Notes from the Legislative Committee meeting of February 12, 2018 may be viewed here.

Notes from the Legislative Committee meeting of December 21, 2017 may be viewed here.

Notes from the Legislative Committee meeting of December 5, 2017 are available here.

The  Outreach and Events Committee was the forerunner to both the Arts and Culture and Communications Committees.  It met as needed.

The minutes of the meeting of October 8, 2019, 2018 can be viewed here.

The minutes of the meeting of December 11, 2018 can be viewed here.

An early “Marketing Notes” document can be viewed here.  Other Outreach Committee notes and documents are available on request from David.Hyman@SFLCD.org.

General Information 

All our meetings are free and open to all. Unless otherwise noted, all meeting locations are ADA compliant and wheelchair accessible.

For all Membership meetings, and most Committee meetings, ASL interpreters will be provided if requested at least ten days in advance. Please send requests to the Committee Chair, or President@sflcd.org.

Meetings and other events of importance to the Cultural District are posted on our Calendar. (Information on importing and using this calendar can be found here.)

To receive emails announcing meetings, and other important information, please click here to join the mailing list. If you are already on our mailing list, you can click here to adjust which Committees you wish to be kept informed about.

Please like and follow the Cultural District’s Facebook Page, keep an eye on our calendar, drop by our Web site from time to time, and contact us any time with questions, suggestions, or just to keep in touch.

Come participate, help out, and be a part of our historic Cultural District!

Launch / Anniversary Event!

Once the current crisis is over, we plan to celebrate the world’s first ever official LEATHER & LGBTQ Cultural District!

So we are throwing a (belatedly) 2nd anniversary party, and you will be invited!  The originally planned date was May 9, 2020.  But we are postponing it, and will let you know just as soon as we have the revised date.

The event will be free, and we’ll be offering appetizers from local restaurants. There will be a cash bar, but soda will be free.

Other attractions:

  • A Makers Market for local artists and vendors
  • Demos
  • Bootblack
  • Spankings!
  • Performances
  • Leather Fashion Show
  • Live band / DJ / Dance
  • Introduction to the LEATHER & LGBTQ Cultural District

ASL interpretation will be provided if requested 10 days in advance.

Local artists and vendors interesting in have a free table to display and sell their creations should contact info@SFLCD.org now!

Want to get involved in planning? Join our Arts and Culture Committee!

Please keep your eye on the Facebook event page for updated information.

It was indeed on May 9, 2018 that the Resolution establishing the LEATHER & LGBTQ Cultural District was signed by then-Mayor Mark Farrell.  Since then, our group has become incorporated as a California Non-Profit Corporation, received 501(c)3 status, obtained funds from the City and private developers, hired a Cultural District Manager, done outreach to local residents, organizations, and businesses, advocated for and against local development projects, scouted possible locations for a Leather Cultural / Community Center, participated in parades and street fairs, worked with city agencies to create Leather and LGBTQ placemaking along Folsom and Harrison Streets, coordinated with the city’s other Cultural Districts, and begun work on developing our CHHESS  — an essential strategy document that will guide the city in protecting and supporting our neighborhood for years to come.

Grant money has been provided to us for the specific purpose of hosting an event to introduce the Cultural District to the neighborhood and community, and we intend to make that event a very special one.

This will be both a party and a showcase for the artists, artisans, performers and businesses of the District.

Are you, or do you know someone who:

    • owns or manages a business of any kind in the Cultural District,
    • creates art, gear, or craft of any kind in and around this neighborhood,
    • operates or manages a restaurant or food service here,
    • performs regularly or occasionally in the District,
    • creates and/or sells artwork that relates to Leather and Queer culture,
    • has historical artifacts of the early days of SoMa to display or sell,
    • would like to assist us in planning, organizing or publicizing,
    • or otherwise has something to contribute to this event?

If so, please write to info@SFLCD.org. Thanks!


Castro Cultural District to Vote

Just a quick reminder that the  Castro LGBTQ Cultural District

Advisory will hold its second round of Board elections on Saturday, February 22, 2020, from  12 PM – 4 PM, in the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus Building, 170 Valencia Street, in San Francisco.

As you know, the Castro LGBTQ Cultural District is kind of like the younger sibling of our own LEATHER & LGBTQ Cultural District, and it is our pleasure to support and assist them in their efforts.  They will be managed by an Advisory Board of 15 people, elected at 3 separate elections. This is the 2nd round, with the third round to be held in April.

The schedule includes Candidate Statements between 12:30 and 1:00, pm, followed by Voting from 1:00 to  4:00.

For a full list of candidates, candidate statements, and a description of election procedures, please visit https://castrolgbtq.org/election.

Bar Crawl with the Supervisor

Left to right: Matt Haney, San Francisco District 6 Supervisor; Beth Hunt, Leather & LGBTQ Cultural District Manager; Lex Montiel, owner of the SF Eagle; and Honey Mahogany, Legislative Aide to Supervisor Matt Haney, as they reached the soon to be finished Eagle Plaza

We hope you had a chance to join our Bar Crawl last week (2/6/2020), during which we visited five landmark venues within the LEATHER & LGBTQ Cultural District with District 6 Supervisor Matt Haney and other city officials.

The stops along the way included the Powerhouse, the SF Eagle, the Lone Star Saloon, the Hole in the Wall, and the Stud.

Check out this write up on the event in the Bay Area Reporter.  Be sure to get on our mailing list, or follow our Facebook page, to hear about other fun and events, as well as ways the LEATHER & LGBTQ Cultural District is working to preserve key institutions of leather culture in our unique neighborhood, and to help shape the ever-changing nature of the area to keep it fun, vibrant, safe, affordable, and kinky!