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Volume 6 Issue 19 Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015

Pg. 9

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Film, fashion and fantasy


San Diego’s women’s community poised to help produce a film Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

A red letter day


Shaw’s expanding universe of philanthropy (l to r) Doug Snyder, Chris Shaw, Paul Anderson and Tony Quan celebrating the Supreme Court’s marriage equality decision at Urban MO’s in June (Photo by Lukas Volk)

New ‘points program’ gets the community involved A look back on sports


By Frank Sabatini Jr. Countless LGBT consumers and their supporters throughout San Diego have reveled in the quartet of Hillcrest establishments operated by MO’s Universe. What many may not realize when patronizing these fun zones along University Avenue — Urban MO’s Bar & Grill, Gossip Grill, Hillcrest Brewing Company and Baja Betty’s — is the extent to which the company’s profits and fundraisers benefit local LGBT organizations. Since acquiring the legendary West Coast Production Company (WCPC) in Middletown in 1979, at the tail end of the disco era, entrepreneur Chris Shaw has made it his mission to combine success with philanthropy.

“Back in the 1980s, you couldn’t give enough money to the AIDS crisis,” he said. “People were dying left and right, and they needed food and medical assistance. That’s when the practice of giving began, and it’s stuck with us ever since.” After moving WCPC to a nearby warehouse location, and then selling out to a business partner in the early ’90s, Shaw planted his commercial roots in Hillcrest (at 308 University Ave.) with Tin Pan Alley, which morphed into Hamburger Mary’s/Kickers before becoming Urban MO’s in 1992. While launching his other eating and drinking establishments after ward, the donations he made to LGBT organizations grew exponentially, and they haven’t stopped. In just the past four years, the company’s cash donations to a variety of organizations total $158,348.

see Shaw, page 7


Two women in Temecula — Monika Kerber and Louise Gardner — are desperately trying to save Villa Chardonnay, the equine and animal sanctuary they opened in 2003. The nearly 10-acre rescue property is considered the largest in Southern California. The sanctuary has saved and housed hundreds of animals over the years, but unfortunately it has now outgrown its space and the animals must be moved as soon as possible. Named for and inspired by their first rescue, Chardonnay — a “beautiful palomino” Kerber

see Horses, page 25

see Fantasy, page 2

Lesbian couple needs help to finalize move of animal sanctuary Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

European eats in Bay Park

Index Opinion………………6 Dining.……...………26 C a l e n d a r. … … … . . . … . 2 8 Business & Services…...29 Classifieds……………30

Contact Us Editorial/Letters 619-961-1960


619-961-1958 San Diego Community News Network

Louise Gardner and Monika Kerber with Nitro Active, the great-grandson of Triple Crown winner Secretariat (Courtesy

Villa Chardonnay)

(l to r) Dawn Stultz and wife Moe Girton (Photo by Lukas Volk) Set to star Chloe Farnsworth as Ava, the film, produced by Soul Kiss Films, tells the story of a woman who “represents anyone who is or has been in a dark place and wants desperately to find their way back to the light,” said Marina Rice Bader, the film’s cowriter/director and producer. Soul Kiss Films is an independent film production company that uses the tag line “empowering women one film at a time.” Other films by Soul Kiss include “Elena Undone,” “A Perfect Ending” and “Raven’s Touch” — a film that will see its San Diego premiere Nov. 18 with FilmOut San Diego, and include a red carpet pre-party and soiree. The Los Angeles-based Bader, founder of Soul Kiss Films, plans to be on hand for the fundraiser and speak to those in attendance about the film. According to its website, Soul Kiss Films is motivated by two directives: “One, to create quality cinema

Helping all the pretty horses

‘Stonewall’ explained

A team of local community leaders is coming together to host a fundraiser to help with production costs for a new women-centric film, “Ava’s Impossible Things.” The event, called “Film, Fashion and Fantasy” — which directly reflects the theme of the film — will take place Thursday, Oct. 1, from 7 – 10 p.m. at Gossip Grill, located at 1220 University Ave., in Hillcrest.



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015

Team Fantasy: (l to r, rear) Dawn Stultz, Moe Girton, Liza Berlin (bottom) Nadia Ferrari, Susan Jester, Kathleen Lorraine, Charisse Pasche, Vicky Pasche (Photo by Lukas Volk) FROM PAGE 1

FANTASY that fulfills the need in the LGBT community for ‘stories that speak to our experience,’ and two, support female-driven projects in what is a still a male dominated industry.” Calling “Ava’s Impossible Things” the company’s “most ambitious film to date,” the Soul Kiss website describes the movie as “unusual, unique and a magical adventure.” Like many independent films today, “Ava’s Impossible Things” will be funded almost completely by fans and supporters. Though nearly $100,000 has already been raised for the film through crowdsourcing campaigns, a matching fund challenge and a Facebook page, more is still needed. Production, which is set to begin in October, will happen with a little help from San Diego to get that final boost required. Money raised flows through

More Than Friends Film Funding (MTFFF), a 501(c)(3) established by Jan Corran, to give LGBTQ filmmakers the backing they need to focus on their films. Local activist Susan Jester is spearheading the Film, Fashion and Fantasy fundraiser, with Moe Girton, general manager and co-owner of Gossip Grill, offering up the venue and her wife, Dawn Stultz, acting as producer of the event. “Everyone involved are great role models for the women’s community and it is going to be a fun night to benefit a women-owned and womenthemed filmmaking company whose reputation for creating quality films about women and or lesbians has international appeal,” Jester said. “The film industry has one of the toughest glass ceilings and this is an opportunity for San Diego women to help break that barrier by supporting [Bader] and Soul Kiss Films’ next movie.” General admission tickets for the evening will be $15 and include a step-and-repeat “red carpet” meet

and greet with “Ava’s Impossible Things” cast members and crew, a silent auction, raffle prizes, entertainment and a fashion show. A special VIP area will further include light appetizers and a signature cocktail. VIP tickets will be $20. The fashion show, presented by Stultz, will include Gaia Child Jewelry, Dapper Boi fashions and Junc Life fashions. Local personalities will be dressing up and walking a runway built specifically for the evening. “We are so honored to be a part of this event and believe it is so important to come together as a community to support female-owned businesses and projects,” said Vicky Pasche, co-owner of Dapper Boi. “We recently raised funds through Kickstarter and have finally received our first production, so the timing of this event couldn’t have been more perfect for us to showcase the versatility of our gender-neutral jeans. We will also be donating a portion of our proceeds from that evening to this amazing film.” Pasche and her wife Charisse were profiled in Gay San Diego earlier this year [see “Lez dress dapper,” Vol. 6, Issue 9 or visit lez-dress-dapper]. DJ Dida will be spinning during the event, with Lilly Holiday Burlesque Dancer and Real Pole Dancers of San Diego providing some visual entertainment throughout the evening. Laura Jane Willcock will be the Emcee for the evening, which will culminate with a date auction, with two date nights being offered up for separate bid; one with Jester and one with Toni Duran, who recently won the Nicky Award for “Woman of the Year.” Proceeds will go to MTFFF. For more information about the film and the event, visit Facebook. com/avasimpossiblethings.t

Fantasy date night auction We asked both ladies: 1. What kind of date would you like to go on? 2. What topics are “off limits”? 3. Do you kiss and tell? 4. Over or under? 5. Are you looking for a fun night out or the love of your life?

Susan Jester: 1. Dinner, drinks and chatter on the water somewhere with a sunset. 2. Nothing is off limits. 3. I never kiss and tell because if I did, some famous gals would be embarrassed and I always protect the safety and privacy of those who have been kissed by me! 4. Over 5. A happily single, fun night out!

Toni Duran: 1. Anything that would help my date and I get to know each other while having some laughs. I like when other people help me think out of the box. Just don’t make me do sports. I’m not good at sports. 2. Politics (Everyone that knows me is laughing right now.) Sports. Did I mention I’m not good at sports? 3. Only sometimes! 4. Goodness ... this one gets you thinking. I’m going TP — definitely over! 5. A fun night out could lead me to the love of my life. I think that’s a pretty good path.


Revelers participate in a Red Dress event in another city. (Courtesy Think Red)

Thinking ‘change’? Think ‘Red’! Profiles in Advocacy Ian Morton In the United States, HIV/AIDS has been at the forefront of most LGBTQ community members’ minds for over 30 years. A disease that cut through a generation of gay men in the 1980s and 90s, HIV redefined our ideas of sex and personal responsibility. It gave rise to conspiracy theories within the LGBTQ community, while bolstering those who opposed our community on religious grounds, calling it “a punishment from God.” It filtered into our cinema and theater, as we saw art reflecting our lives. It brought about a gravitas, as the defiant hedonism of the ’70s and ’80s gave way to devastating

losses. And, as communities do, we rallied around HIV/AIDS advocacy. Most of us know the script in San Diego County; we Walk, we Dine Out, we buy Jell-O shots at bars. Some of us ride our bikes from San Francisco to Los Angeles. We attend pool parties and bar events. We give awards, watch drag queens and kings, and cheer and cry when that “really inspirational” song gets performed. These are the tropes that have defined HIV advocacy in San Diego for decades. Now that “light at the end of the tunnel” for HIV/AIDS is actually visible. Through prevention strategies such as PrEP and studies which show that HIV-positive individuals who are able to reduce their virus to “undetectable,” we have the knowledge and tools to end new HIV infections locally and nationally. With this potential

however, comes the challenge of bringing HIV back into the spotlight, for this last push to end the disease in the U.S. It is in this time of inspiration that we have a new effort rising: the Think Red Project, Inc. The Think Red Project, Inc. — a local nonprofit organization — was founded by Steven Shyne and Mar vin Hanashiro earlier this year. With over 20 years of combined marketing, event planning and management experience, their motto, “serious about fundraising, and serious about fun,” is exemplified by hosting events that support the local HIV/AIDS community. “Simply put, HIV is still a thing,” said Hanashiro, who works in the HIV field at UC San Diego. “Locally, California has the second largest number of HIV and AIDS cases in the United States and San Diego County has the third largest number of HIV and AIDS cases in California. We must continue to bring awareness to how HIV affects our community, through activism and fundraising for organizations that help make a positive impact on preventing new HIV transmissions.” The upcoming “Red Dress Party San Diego” is a Think Red concept that, while not new to the country, has never been produced in San Diego. And yes, it is exactly what you think – a group of individuals celebrating our strides in the fight against HIV while sporting a red dress. This event immediately took the social media world by storm and the ticket sales are already indicating that this will be a premier event in the San Diego social scene. “The lineage of the Red Dress Party concept goes back, as far as we know, to Portland, which

still today hosts the most wellreceived Red Dress Party, drawing 2,000-some attendees each year.” Shyne said. “Other cities also share the Red Dress namesake — Sacramento, Chicago, New Orleans and so on. We have nothing like this. I’d often think to myself ‘Someone should do that here!’ and finally I banded together with other like-minded change-makers to bring Red Dress Party to San Diego.” Proceeds from the 2015 Red Dress Party will support San Diego HIV agencies and programs through the San Diego HIV Funding Collaborative (HFC). The HFC, like Think Red, was founded by concerned San Diego residents in 1990, and has issued nearly $7 million in grants since its inception. The goal of Think Red is to grow and inject the “celebration” back into San Diego HIV philanthropy. In Shyne’s words, “Our tagline of ‘Celebrate Impact’ says it all — sure, there might be a long way to go, but we should take a moment

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


to reflect on the achievements that have come this far and continue to raise funds, drive awareness and reduce stigma all at the same time with a light-hearted and fun-loving celebration.” “There’s a ripple effect to anything that disrupts the norm,” added board member Vincent Dwyer. “We hope that our efforts ignite the human spirit and propel not only our future events, but inspire others to set out to make a difference big or small.” Red Dress Par ty San Diego will be held on Oct. 3 at the San Diego Museum of Man in Balboa Park. Additional information and tickets may be found at reddresspar —Ian D. Morton is the senior program analyst at San Diego Human Dignity Foundation and produces the Y.E.S. San Diego LGBTQ youth conference. To nominate an individual or nonprofit for this column, please email the information to

(l to r) Think Red board members Vince Dwyer, Marvin Hanashiro and Steven Shyne (Photo by Allan McGavin)


GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


Hot events, cool zone at the Archives Out of the Archives Walter G. Meyer Lambda Archives had a couple of events in August and has more planned for September. Up next, a team from the Archives will be walking in AIDS Walk on Sept. 26. Archives’ board member and team captain David Ramos reports that we are already more than halfway to our goal of $5,000, but we need you to help! To sign up for our team or support our walkers with a donation, visit and search for “Lambda” under “Join an existing team.” Then contact us at or call 619-260-1522 to get your team shirt. On Monday, Sept. 28, at 6:30 p.m., we will be holding our next Out At the Archives event at Diversionary Theatre, 4545 Park Blvd. It is Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15) so for this installment of Out At the Archives, we’ll be taking a look at the major role Hispanics have played in the LGBT community in San Diego. Don’t miss this fascinating presentation. Sign up through our Facebook page. The recent sports-themed Out At the Archives, “Coming Out to Play” drew over 50 people to The San Diego LGBT Community Center to watch Roman Jimenez present the history of LGBT sports in San Diego. Following Roman’s brief jog down memory lane, George

Biagi moderated a panel discussion of the past and current state of LGBT sports. Edie Jacobsen of the Different Strokes Swim Team; Debbie Chaddock of Front Runners; Andrew Bergee of the San Diego American Flag Football League; Lisa Timmerman of America’s Finest City Softball League; and Mike Passante, an early leader of the softball league, the San Diego Pool League and editor of the short-lived LGBT sports newsletter, “San Diego Scores” in the 1980s, all participated. There was beer, popcorn, peanuts, cotton candy and “America the Beautiful” at the seventh inning. OK, just kidding about that part but there were plenty of refreshments and the price was right. Many of the sports organizations had representatives on hand to answer questions and recruit new members. (I guess it is true, LGBT do recruit!) In response to a question regarding the transgender community, all of the team reps assured the community that anyone who wants to play is welcome. The panelists agreed that their leagues should try to do more outreach to the transgender community. Lambda Archives Board President Maureen Steiner thanked the panelists and the audience for attending and spoke of how her own involvement in sports and the first Gay Games in San Francisco. She also introduced John Lockhart, author of “The Gay Men’s Guide to Fitness” and himself a participant in numerous Gay Games and win-

Front Runners and Walkers San Diego was represented at a recent “Out at the Archives” event, “Coming Out to Play.” (Courtesy Lambda Archives) ner of many medals. John is going strong at age 80. Lambda Archives also participated in South Bay Pride in Chula Vista on Sept. 12 and will have a booth at North County Pride at the Beach on Oct. 10 in Oceanside. We can always use help at our booth — it’s another great way to meet people and have fun. If you’d like to volunteer, please contact us at So, get out and get hot! But if you overheat, feel free to drop into the Archives to cool off. We keep it a very pleasant 70 degrees to preserve our rare papers and artifacts and that means it’s very comfortable in here. We are open Monday through Friday from noon – 5 p.m., which is the hottest part of the day. We have plenty of chairs. If you feel like volunteering, there is always work to be done and we’ll be happy to train you. Or just bring your knitting

or a book to read (or become a member and borrow one of ours). Anyway, please visit YOUR Lambda Archives. Our oral history program is rolling — are you next? Contact us to be interviewed. With school back in session, we’ve been welcoming interns from San Diego State and some of the community colleges. If you’d like school credit for great work, get in touch. Are you getting our emails? If

you’re not getting at least one email a month from us, check your spam box and see if we’re not hiding there. Email info@LambdaArchives. org or call 619-260-1522 to stay in touch and get on the word about all of the happenings at the Archives! —Walter G. Meyer is the author of the critically acclaimed gay novel “Rounding Third” and the manager of Lambda Archives. Reach him at


Stuck in the (bisexual) closet Prepping for #AIDSWalkSD Life Beyond Therapy Michael Kimmel Dear Michael: I am a closet bisexual. I have been with a terrific guy for about 10 years now. We have a great sex life and a good life together. But, I have never been with another woman sexually and I want to experience that. So, last month I told my boyfriend and he freaked out. He said that this was a deal breaker for him and that we agreed to be monogamous and that this totally fucks with his ability to trust me. What do I do now? —Coming Out and Unhappy Dear Coming Out: Thanks for writing to me. This is, indeed, a challenging situation for both of you. Let’s look at it in detail. The two of you are on vastly different timelines regarding your awareness of your bisexuality: You’re much further along than he is. Though you’ve had years to process this and look at it from all angles, he may feel blindsided by this information and in a state of shock. This is to be expected. He will need time to catch up. Since you care very much about him, you’ll want to give him that time. This is probably not going to be much fun for you, however, unless you are an incredibly patient person who is very good at delaying her own gratification. Eventually, this situation will resolve itself. While there are many factors to consider, timing being a crucial one, there are basically only two options for your partner: He will — at some point — be okay with you experiencing another woman sexually. He won’t ever be okay with it. It seems to me like these are his two choices. And there are certainly choices for you: Be okay with whatever he can handle, or not be okay with it. From my work with bisexual clients — both individually and as part of a couple — I have seen many variations of the above combos. I have seen partners slowly shift — over time — to acceptance, while their bisexual partners waited for them and I have seen partners slowly realize that this will never be okay with them and they can’t handle their bisexual partners expressing their bisexuality. I have worked with commit-

ted couples where one member of the couple is bisexual and she/ he talks about her/his desires with their significant other and together, they negotiate the challenges of being bisexual outside of a committed relationship while remaining in that relationship. However, some relationships like yours do not stand the test of time: The bisexual person is only willing to wait so long to express herself/himself and, even given plenty of time, their partner never gets to the place where this is okay with them. There are no cookie-cutter answers to this kind of challenge. It is certainly a major stressor on a monogamous relationship. It’s difficult for both parties: The bisexual person has been holding back expressing their same-sex attractions (or has been hiding/denying them) and their partner may have had no clue that their partner was even struggling with same-sex attractions. As you and your partner navigate this new aspect of your relationship, please get support from other bisexual women and men. Here in San Diego, there are bisexual support/discussion groups that meet on a regular basis. You can contact The San Diego LGBT Community Center at 619-692-2077 for days and times of their meetings. There are also Internet bisexual discussion groups, bulletin boards and websites for both you and your partner: You can both check them out and make some connections with other monogamous, loving couples in similar situations. I strongly encourage both of you to seek out all the help and support you can get to make it through this challenging time. Many other couples have been in your situation and their experiences can be both affirming and instructive. Above all, your journey is an important one. Honor your truth and honor your relationship. Ongoing, kind and respectful communication with your partner is crucial, as you navigate the bisexual path together. Please feel free to email me again and let me know how you’re doing and how I can help. —Michael Kimmel is a licensed psychotherapist who specializes in helping LGBT clients achieve their goals and deal with anxiety, depression, grief, sexually addictive behavior, coming out, relationship challenges and homophobia. Contact him at 619-955-3311 or visit

Back Out with Benny Ben Cartwright I hate going to the gym. I find it boring, somewhat intimidating, and I’ve always found it slightly odd that we as humans will go into a building to move our bodies without really moving anywhere. And of course, there is the awkwardness of “gay gyms” which are filled with a mix of cruising, overly dressed guys, and people trying to show off. I am a big fan of health, fitness, wellness, and exercise, though (I do work out in a park once a week

with a great personal trainer, Grant Foreman), and do my best to incorporate activities into my daily life that are fun and give me exercise at the same time. With AIDS Walk San Diego just over a week away on Saturday, Sept. 26, I’ve been doing all sorts of “training” to get ready for the big walk. In fact, Rick Cervantes and I have put together our own fitness challenge to raise funds for the event and you’re invited! On Wednesday, Sept. 23 from 8 – 9 a.m. in the auditorium of the San Diego LGBT Community Center, we’re putting together a “squat bootcamp” class led by my trainer Grant. Participants can donate $10 at the door, or get a sponsor to donate $1 per

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


squat completed during the class. The class will be a great way to jump start your day and get your legs ready for the big walk! Visit for more information and join us! The next few days are going to be full of other #AIDSWalkSD fundraising events that I encourage you to check out. Some notable fundraisers include bingo at Gossip Grill on Saturday, Sept. 19 at 2 p.m. sponsored by The arcHIVe Project; a fundraiser at PECS on Saturday at 7 p.m. sponsored by The Power of Six; an art sale at the Hillcrest Farmers Market on Sunday, Sept. 20 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. sponsored by the Hillcrest Business Association’s team; and the Urban Jungle drag show on Sunday at 8

see Benny, page 29



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



Poll Results How many different Pride celebrations do you normally attend per year?

84.5% - 1 3% - 2 3% - 3 3% - 4 6.5% - 5

This week's Poll How are you participating in AIDSWalk?

p Walker/Runner p Volunteer p Donor p Vendor p Not Participating

To cast your vote, visit



Mayflower marriages By Pastor Sam Greening

Kim Davis is from my neck of the woods, so her case is especially interesting to me. She’s the county clerk [in Rowan County, Kentucky] who refused to comply with the Supreme Court’s decision granting marriage equality to same-sex couples. Though I disagree with her religious views, I really take issue with those who compare her to early settlers who came to these shores in search of religious freedom. Though several such groups came to America, it is the Mayflower Pilgrims whom we most often think of when we mention such religious pioneers, for they were the first and remain the most famous. Indeed, the Pilgrims did come to North America to experience freedom of religion, and the religion they brought with them was the Congregational Way — the very religion we still practice at the corner of Cave and Ivanhoe in downtown La Jolla. Though I don’t think the Pilgrims of 1620 would agree with my congregation’s 2008 endorsement of marriage equality for same-sex couples, it’s important to remember that they didn’t approve of Christmas or earrings, either. But those who wish for the right to discriminate in the area of marriage would do well to avoid reference to the Pilgrims, whose stance on marriage might surprise today’s religious conservatives. I might even be so bold as to say that it was the Pilgrims who started us down the road that brought us to today’s progressive thinking on marriage. First of all, Pilgrim marriages were not solemnized in churches by the clergy, but were viewed as legal contracts. The reasons for this were twofold. First was their desire to rid the church of rituals that were not mentioned in the scriptures. And for all the talk of marriage

in the Bible, there is no scriptural reference to a rabbi, priest, or pastor performing a marriage ceremony, nor to weddings taking place in houses of worship. And second, not everybody who came over on the Mayflower shared the faith of the Pilgrims. The practice of civil marriage was one of the main ways that the religious majority chose not to force their views on the minority. None of this is to say that marriage was unimportant to the Pilgrims. It was, in fact, very important. They were early believers that marriage should be based, not on economic convenience, family alliance, or even strictly on the need to procreate, but rather on mutual love and friendship. Though this view is the predominate one in our culture, it was unusual 400 years ago. The notion that the legal foundation for marriage is not to be found in religious institutions, and the belief that love and friendship are at least as important as biological function were two of the innovations that landed with the Mayflower on Plymouth Rock. So the next time we celebrate marriage equality, let’s give the Pilgrims their due — it’s not despite them, but actually (at least in part) because of them that religious conservatives should refrain from forcing others to agree with their beliefs about matrimony. —San Greening is pastor of Congregational Church of La Jolla, an open and affirming congregation of the United Church of Christ. Dating back to 1889, the church is La Jolla’s oldest faith community. Its covenant is rooted in the worship tradition brought to America by the Pilgrims in the early 1600s. ​Inspired by the United Church of Christ’s history as a leader of cultural movements advocating for a just and inclusive society, Congregational Church of La Jolla welcomes all people into its church family. For more info visit

EDITOR Morgan M. Hurley (619) 961-1960

ART DIRECTOR Vincent Meehan (619) 961-1961

PUBLISHER David Mannis (619) 961-1951

CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Jeff Clemetson, x119 Ken Williams, x102 Jeremy Ogul, x119

PRODUCTION ARTISTS Todd Kammer, x115 Suzanne Dzialo

ACCOUNTING Priscilla Umel-Martinez (619) 961-1962

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Chris Azzopardi Benny Cartwright Michael Kimmel Walter G. Meyer Ian Morton Jeff Praught Frank Sabatini Jr. WEB & SOCIAL MEDIA Jen Van Tieghem, x118 COPY EDITOR Dustin Lothspeich

SALES & MARKETING DIRECTOR Mike Rosensteel (619) 961-1958 ADVERTISING CONSULTANTS Sloan Gomez, x104 Andrew Bagley, x106 Lisa Hamel, x107 True Flores

WEB DESIGN Kim Espinoza

DISTRIBUTION Gay San Diego is distributed free every other Friday of the month. COPYRIGHT 2015. All rights reserved.

A great story Sarah is so wonderful [see “’This is my community,’” Vol. 6, Issue 18]. We’re so glad to have her as part of The Center team. Thank you for sharing your wonderful story!! Cheers to Sarah and Daniel! —Benny Cartwright, via Moved to tears reading Sarah’s story! She’s the best! —Julie Benitez, via Wow. Amazing and inspiring story! Thanks for sharing. —Rick Cervantes, via

Insight on Pride This is great insight to how Pride works from a BOD level [see “Pride board speaks,” Vol. 6, Issue 18]. It would be good to see a similar letter to fill us in on all the things that is planned by staff (the things listed that the board does NOT do). This was very informative. Thanks. —Kurt Cunningham, via

Boy George Celebrated my birthday with a Culture Club concert in Orillia, Ontario, Canada concert in August 2015 [see “Boy II Man,” Vol. 6, Issue 17]. Never have I had a better time. You’ve still got it George. Glad to see you looking so well and sounding great. Hope this is the start of many more special Culture Club moments. —Vicki, via

see Letters, page 29

OPINIONS/LETTERS: Gay San Diego encourages letters to the editor and guest editorials. Please email either to and include your phone number and address for verification. We reserve the right to edit letters for brevity and accuracy. Letters and guest editorials do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or staff.

SUBMISSIONS/NEWS TIPS Press releases and story ideas are welcomed. Send press releases, tips, photos or story ideas to For breaking news and investigative story ideas contact the editor by phone or email.

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Chris Shaw relaxes on his 43-foot Tiara powerboat (Courtesy MO’s Universe) FROM PAGE 1


That figure includes annual, minimum donations of $20,000 to the San Diego LGBT Community Center, which Shaw has actually been making for some years. “Chris Shaw has been an incredibly generous Center Supporter for years,” said Dr. Delores Jacobs, CEO of The Center. “He is always one of the first to step up to support the programs, activities and work The Center does.” “The Center is a huge resource for our community, and we know the money is spent wisely on multiple programs that support the community,” Shaw said. “His consistent support of The Center’s Youth Housing Project and Hillcrest Youth Center has helped allow us to provide life-changing — and sometimes life-saving — interventions for our youth,” Jacobs said. “Chris’s generosity, commitment to community and willingness to step forward to make a difference have made our work possible and changed our community for the better in too many ways to count. We truly cannot thank him enough.” Mama’s Kitchen has been a regular benefactor as well. “Chris has been very generous over the years and attentive to nonprofit organizations like ours,” said Alberto Cortes, executive director of Mama’s Kitchen. “He also helped us with our capital campaign that started in 2010 to purchase the building we’re currently in.” In a genuine, humble tone, Shaw noted that some of the monies given to charities such as the Hillcrest Youth Center, AIDS Walk, Mama’s Kitchen, the Imperial Court, plus numerous LGBT sports teams that compete locally and nationally, stem from a variety of fundraisers that have become staple events within the community. The popular Tantrums & Tiaras: Battle of the Bar Queens, for example, generates on average $30,000 a year since its inception in 2009. Monthly bingo nights held at Urban MO’s net between $1,000 and $1,500 per event, with all proceeds given usually to LGBT sports teams. Those recipients recently included the San Diego Gay Tennis Federation, the San Diego Hoops, and Hillcrest Brewing Company’s Spikes Softball Team. More impressive is the $100,000 that MO’s Universe AIDS/LifeCycle Team generated for this year’s AIDS Ride, a seven-day biking trek from San Francisco to Los Angeles that raises awareness and money for the cause every June. “We brought on board the whole local biking community and held various fundraisers leading up to it,” Shaw said. MO’s Universe is also a sponsor of the upcoming Gay Bowl XV organized by the National Gay Flag Football League. The event welcomes men’s and women’s teams from 26 cities competing at the Del Mar Polo

Fields on Oct. 9-12. Team members from each of Shaw’s four establishments will take part in the games. In an effort to increase monies for local LGBT charities, Shaw recently implemented a new company-wide “points program” that affords patrons the opportunity to give back to the community while they eat and drink. Through a plastic swipe card, a point is earned for every dollar spent at any of his establishments. The accumulated points, of any amount, can then be converted to matching monetary values issued on behalf of the customer’s name to a charity of choice: The Center; AIDS Walk; Being Alive; or the MO’s Universe AIDS/LifeCycle Team. Or when certain totals are met, the points can be used for a variety of prizes and rewards such as discounts on food and beverage purchases, private beer tastings, and dinners for two. “It’s a natural fit for our company and it’s one more way we can create a better experience for our guests and the community,” said Shaw, who currently employs 244 people under “good health care and 401K plans.”

Those employees, he added, are sometimes required to give time or money toward the Hillcrest Youth Center. Throughout a recent 18-month period, for example, frontline staffers were asked to donate $1 from their tip earnings for every shift they worked. The effort raised more than $19,000. “Our philosophy is that we’re here for the gay community, providing them with safe, clean places where they can express themselves,” he said. “It’s a very simple model and we’re consistent at it.” When asked about the steady crop of bars and restaurants coming and going within Hillcrest — or those we’ve seen expand such as Flicks and Rich’s — Shaw isn’t fazed. “We don’t call them competitors,” he said. “Any successful business is going to bring more people in to the neighborhood, which is good for everyone.” A resident of Mission Hills and an avid boater, Shaw and his longtime partner, Doug Snyder, travel extensively on their 43-foot Tiara powerboat berthed in Vancouver, Canada. “It’s our passion,” he said, while recently vacationing near the San Juan Islands off the coast of Washington state. When on home turf, Shaw is seen seating with guests, cleaning tables and jumping into the bustle at all four of his establishments, and without the ego of a successful businessman. “I call myself a glorified bus boy, and we make sure our guests and employees have an extraordinary experience,” he said. For more details of the new MO’s Universe rewards program, visit —Frank Sabatini Jr. can be reached at

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015




GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015

The Riot’s Riot

‘Stonewall’ actor, director talk ‘whitewashing’ controversy, bricks and sex By Chris Azzopardi | Q Syndicate Blowback from a mere twominute-and-twenty-three-second trailer of “Stonewall” stormed the web in early August. It was intense. Like the historic brick-throwing, slur-lashing brawl that broke out in New York City outside a Greenwich Village gay bar in 1969, it provoked an uproar. And also like the Stonewall riots, the melting pot of people the film sought to represent felt … unrepresented. “To all considering watching the newest whitewashed version of queer history,” began 18-year-old self-proclaimed “transwomyn of color” Pat Cordova-Goff via the Gay Straight Alliance Network, alleging the movie’s cast lacked diversity. As she declared her resistance to openly gay action-turned-indie director Roland Emmerich’s fictional interpretation based around the events leading up to a landmark moment in LGBT history, the Stonewall riots, she rallied a fervent army of fellow boycotters ... 24,000 ... and counting. The issue, according to Cordova-Goff and other opponents: Its ivory lead, Jeremy Irvine, as small-town-turned-big-city rebel Danny Winters, is white. And it’s true. He is not black. He is not Puerto Rican. He is not female. But the “Stonewall” ensemble, Irvine insists, is a “wide, diverse cast.” The 25-year-old

English actor fully acknowledges he expected a passionate reaction to the film, particularly because “we’re doing a story that is so important to so many people.” Irvine, did not however, foresee the kind of pre-release revolt from those who claimed “Stonewall” underemphasized the trans community and queer women of color, deeming the film a “whitewashed” take on an otherwise mixed-minority historical occurrence. “That was a surprise; I never expected to hear that,” said Irvine, spotlighting Danny’s band of fellow rioters: Marsha B. Johnson [Otoja Abit], a black transwoman who co-founded Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries with prominent trans activist Sylvia Rivera, and a lesbian credited by some as initiating the riot, calling on others to “do something.” Breakout actor Jonny Beauchamp also stars, playing self-proclaimed “street queen” Ray/Ramona, a composite of both Rivera and jailed protester Raymond Castro. Emmerich insists his dramatization — inspired by a distant friend’s real-life experience and his own — is “inclusive”; that Irvine’s Danny is the lens through which we see these events unfold. “I think it’s cool when a white kid learns from a Puerto Rican and a black kid, and is a better person afterwards,” he continued. Regarding the controversy: Emmerich said that while shooting

Director Roland Emmerich (Photo by Philippe Bossé)

“Independence Day: Resurgence,” “they kept [the controversy] away from me.” “Only for so long, however,” he said. “After a while, you kind of know what’s going on. I was shocked. Luckily, I had some gay activists, like Larr y Kramer, speak up for us.” (Kramer, the 80-year-old writer and HIV activist, addressed Emmerich on Facebook: “Don’t listen to the crazies,” he wrote. “And thank you for your passion.”) So why did Emmerich cast a white, as he calls him, “catalyst character”? He said, simply, “You have to put yourself a little bit in, and I’m white.” “Stonewall” was never intended to focus on race but rather it was meant to trace the beginnings of the gay rights movement, the steps we’ve made and the steps we haven’t. For Emmerich, the director behind major blow-up-ever ything blockbusters such as “Independence Day,” “Godzilla” and “The Day After Tomorrow,” it’s a passion project — a piece of

(l to r) Stills from the upcoming movie, “Stonewall.” The film’s trailer initially caused quite an uproar when it was released, with many saying it had “whitewashed” history. (Photos by Philippe Bossé) work so close to his heart he self-financed the film with friends and even stepped in as director when no one else would. “Nobody wanted to do it,” he revealed. “And I was stubborn and then I got it done.” Ir vine was unfazed that according to an Instagram post from out screenwriter Jon Robin Baitz, “no studio would give a cent to [this movie]. Including the studios he [Emmerich] has made a great deal of money for.” With unconventional starring stints in such films as 2012’s “Great Expectations” and “Beyond the Reach,” the actor’s own projects have mostly been off the beaten path. “I’m on the side of anyone who thinks that we should have a bit more risk-taking with mainstream cinema,” said Irvine, who starred in Steven Spielberg’s emotional juggernaut “War Horse.” “It’s played far too safe.” Regarding “Stonewall,” Emmerich was determined to make this movie, studios be damned. “I said, ‘I’m not going away from my kids; I’m standing up for them.’” His “kids,” of course, include Irvine and Beauchamp, and the rest of the young, colorful, core cast. But Emmerich’s “Stonewall” doesn’t seek to just tell its characters’ stories – the director, along with Baitz, had his eye on the bigger picture. His pursuit: to tell the story of LGBT youth everywhere. “Roland was always talking about the homeless kids who we don’t know about today,” Irvine said. “This little group of fictional characters represents those who weren’t made famous by the movement.” When Emmerich became involved with the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center, he made a disheartening discover y: 40 percent of LA homeless youth are LGBT. Personally struck, he dug

deeper and realized that histor y was repeating itself. “I was like, ‘Oh my god,’” he recalled. “At the same time, I read a lot about the Stonewall riots and found some kind of parallel — a group of homeless kids were very part of this riot too. The unsung heroes. I said, ‘Maybe I have to help.’” Emmerich threw himself into the project, researching the riots, and also, along with producers, inter viewing several Stonewall vets. Limitations manifested quickly. “Finding actual survivors is very difficult,” Irvine said. “This was just before the AIDS crisis, so actually finding people who were there is tough. And first accounts do vary — I mean, it was a riot.” Their varied play-by-plays hindered the filmmakers’ factfinding, a realization that led Emmerich to the conclusion that nobody really knows what happened that night. “You always have to take their stories with a grain of salt,” he said. “It’s like when there’s a traffic accident and you ask five witnesses and they tell you five different stories.” When the final film was cut, those same sources were the first to screen it. Emmerich said they were “very, very surprised and complimentary about how right we got it.” And they knew this wasn’t a documentary; it was Emmerich’s vision. “I’m always saying I made a movie about the unsung heroes of Stonewall. I wanted to give those kids a voice,” he said. Because he found “the whole thing incredibly moving,” Irvine

see Stonewall, page 31


Diversionary Theatre


Aztec Appliance

#1 on Fifth


Tony Azar Rachel Young

Mission Hills Bike


Redwing Bar & Grill

San Diego is known for its thriving LGBT community, representing a close-knit family that is full of life. Our community returns again and again to the vibrant nooks and crannies of our city, patronizing businesses, supporting local community organizations and empowering its members, day in and day out. We recently asked the readers of Gay San Diego to take a moment and share with us their favorite restaurants, bars and retail businesses, found throughout our local neighborhoods and even beyond. In this issue, we offer the full list of Best of Gay San Diego winners, showcasing them with colorful photos and highlighting many with their specific missions to serve. To each of our winners, we extend a hearty congratulations on your Best of Gay San Diego award and we hope our loyal readers — and your loyal customers — continue to show you patronage and appreciation for many years to come.

Mission Hills Auto


East Coast Pizza Circa

Stockton Financial

Stuart Benjamin Jewelers



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015

Congratulations Winners! ACCOUNTANT Invictus Advisors Jeremy Dutson - Abbas, Jenson & Cundari CPAs ACUPUNCTURE Fix Body Group Bodhi Massage & Wellness Center ADULT BUSINESS The Crypt Barnett Avenue AMERICAN CUISINE Crest Cafe Lil B’s ANTIQUES Omar’s Consignments Fifth Avenue Antiques

CASUAL DINING Crest Cafe Casual Dining CHINESE CUISINE Lucky Liu’s Hong Kong Restaurant

APPLIANCE STORE Sears Outlet Aztec Appliance ART GALLERY Alexander Salazar Sparks Gallery

COCKTAIL #1 Fifth Avenue Snake Oil Cocktail Company

AUTO DEALERSHIP Mission Valley Honda Courtesy Chevrolet

COFFEE SHOP Pappalecco Caffe Calabria

AUTO REPAIR SHOP Mission Hills Automotive Smitty’s Service

COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY San Diego State University UC San Diego

BAKERY Babycakes Bread and Cie

CONSIGNMENT SHOP Omar’s Consignments Karen’s Consignment Gallery

BANK Well’s Fargo Bank California Bank and Trust

COSMETOLOGY/ DERMATOLOGY Dr. William Heimer, Hillcrest Dr. Gilbert Lee, Changes Plastic Surgery CRAFT BEER BAR Hillcrest Brewing Company Hess Brewing CREDIT UNION San Diego County Credit Union Mission Federal Credit Union

BAR #1 Fifth Avenue Pecs BARBEQUE Phil’s BBQ BBQ BAR CUISINE Uptown Tavern Redwing Bar & Grill BARTENDER Marc Meza, #1 Fifth Avenue Big Mike, Top of The Bay, Porto Vista Hotel BICYCLE SHOP Mission Hills Bike Shop Adams Avenue Bicycles BOUTIQUE Mankind Krave and Kulture BREAKFAST Lil B’s Crest Cafe BRIDAL SHOP David’s Bridal Bridal and Tux Galleria BRUNCH Bottega Americano Urban Mo’s

PET GROOMER Pet Palace You Dirty Dog PHARMACY Hillcrest Pharmacy Medical Center Pharmacy

BURRITO Lolita’s at the Park El Zarape

CHIROPRACTOR Fix Body Group Inner Balance Institute (TIE) Chiropractique Urban Retreat (TIE)

Bodhi Veterinary Clinic

PET BOARDING/DAYCARE The Pet Lounge The Golden Paw

BURGER Slater’s 50/50 Crest Cafe

CASINO Sycuan Casino Viejas Casino & Resort

DAY SPA Bodhi Massage & Wellness Center Aqua Day Spa DELI The Deli Llama T Deli DENTIST Dr. Jeffrey Keeny, DDS Dr. Christopher Rhoades, DDS DESSERT Extraordinary Desserts Babycakes DINNER S&M: Sausage and Meat The Red Door DEEJAY DJ Dirty Kurty DJ Taj DOCTOR David Shamblaw, MD Joseph Lonergan, MD DONUT SHOP Donut Star Donut Bar DRY CLEANERS Veribest Cleaners La Mission Cleaners FAMILY RESTAURANT Perry’s Café Crest Café

PIZZA East Coast Pizza Bronx Pizza

Café Sevilla FARMERS MARKET Hillcrest Farmers Market Little Italy Mercato Farmers Market

JEWELER Stuart Benjamin & Co. Jewelry Designs Jared Galleria of Jewelry


LATE NIGHT DINING Saigon on Fifth Lalo’s Tacos Etc

FINANCIAL PLANNER Mary Stockton Steve Doster FINE DINING The Wellington Bertrand at Mister A’s

LAWYER Law Offices of Rachel Young Law Offices of Robert Lynn LEATHER BAR San Diego Eagle Pecs

REAL ESTATE AGENT Tony Azar Tamara Zyhylij REAL ESTATE OFFICE Ascent Real Estate The Metropolitan Group RESALE / THRIFT SHOP Buffalo Exchange Goodwill RETIREMENT LIVING St. Paul’s Senior Living Merrill Gardens ROMANTIC DINING Tidal The Red Door

FLORIST Green Fresh Florals Storm International Florist

LIVE MUSIC VENUE Martinis Above Fourth Table + Stage The Observatory North Park

FRENCH CUISINE Le Bonne Table Bleu Boheme

LIVE THEATER VENUE Diversionary Theatre The Old Globe

SEAFOOD Marine Room Fish Market

FROZEN YOGURT Pinkberry Golden Spoon

LUNCH T Deli East Coast Pizza

SPORTS BAR Slater’s 50/50 True North Tavern

FURNITURE STORE Lawrance Furniture Furniture Divano

MANICURE/PEDICURE Beauty Lounge K & K Nails & Spa

SUB/SANDWICH Big Front Door The Deli Llama

GREEK CUISINE Alexi’s Greek Café Olympic Café

MASSAGE Fix Body Group Bodhi Massage & Wellness Center

SUSHI Sushi Deli Wonderful Sushi

GYM/WORKOUT STUDIO Fix Body Group Fit Athletic HAIR SALON Richard Joseph Salon Bear Hair by Chuck HAPPY HOUR #1 Fifth Avenue Martinis Above Fourth Table + Stage

MENS FASHION Mankind Krave and Kulture MEXICAN CUISINE Ortegas, a Mexican Bistro Baja Betty’s MICRO BREWERY Hillcrest Brewing Company Hess Brewing

SALAD Tender Greens Crest Café

TANNING SALON iTan Hillcrest TATTOO / PIERCING STUDIO Full Circle Dr. Jefe’s THAI CUISINE Amarin Thai Lotus Thai Restaurant & Wine Bar TUXEDO SHOP Tuxedo Discounters The Gentlemen’s Tux Club

HARDWARE STORE Hillcrest Ace Hardware San Diego Hardware

NEIGHBORHOOD BAR #1 Fifth Avenue Redwing Bar & Grill

HEALTH FOOD STORE Sprouts Farmers Market Whole Foods Market

NEW BUSINESS Snake Oil Cocktail Company Studio Barre

VETERINARY HOSPITAL Bodhi Veterinary Clinic and Animal Hospital Kensington Veterinary Hospital

HEALTHY DINING Luna Grill Fresh Mediterranean Fig Tree Café

NEW RESTAURANT Circa Oscar Wilde’s Irish Pub

VIETNAMESE CUISINE Saigon on Fifth Pho Saigon Star

NIGHTCLUB Rich’s Brass Rail

WEDDING VENUE Francis Parker Weddings Cuvier Club Ballroom

OPTOMETRIST Urban Optiks The Unoptical

WINE BAR Wine Steals 100 Wines Kitchen

OUTDOOR BAR #1 Fifth Avenue Urban MO’s Bar & Grill

WOMEN’S FASHION Mimi and Red Hunt and Gather

OUTDOOR PATIO DINING The Patio on Goldfinch Tidal

YOGA STUDIO Pilgrimage of the Heart Corepower Yoga

HOSPITAL Kaiser Foundation Hospital Sharp Memorial Hospital HOTEL The Westgate Hotel The Pearl Hotel INDIAN CUISINE Bombay Exotic Cuisine of India India Palace INTERNATIONAL CUISINE Café Sevilla Kaiserhof ‎ITALIAN CUISINE Arrivederci Ristorante Buona Forchetta JAPANESE CUISINE Wonderful Sushi Lava Sushi

PAWN SHOP Hillcrest Pawn Palace Pawnbrokers PERSONAL TRAINER Fix Body Group Chris Keith Bodhi Massage


GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015

DINING AND ENTERTAINMENT Categories are divided into



American Cuisine CREST CAFE 425 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-2510


2611 El Cajon Blvd. San Diego, CA 92104 619-296-8268


3766 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-296-4173


350 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-683-9322

Pie for a guy! We at Hillcrest’s Bread & Cie Bakery/Café are local kids who’ve made good nationwide. With everything baked fresh on-site every day of the year, Bread & Cie artisan breads, pastries and café fare have been featured prominently and repeatedly in most national food publications, including the Sunday “New York Times,” “Bon Appetit” and “Saveur” magazines as well as top food magazines

BEST OF GAY SAN DIEGO 2015 throughout the world in Paris, Munich, Korea, China and Japan. We’ve even won the coveted Gold Medallion Award for “Best San Diego bakery and café” for the past nine years in row. Alas, what does all this mean if you’re not No. 1 at home? We just came in second as “Best Bakery” with you, Gay San Diego. What the what?! Simply put: That will not stand. We vow to work harder and bake better stuff. We do anything to be number one with our neighbors in 2016. Even if it means bribing our way to the top of Gay San Diego. So here’s what: Although we’re international big shots, our big Bread & Cie’s heart is ultimately committed to the local community. You probably already know we donate all our day-old baked goods each day to homeless, battered women and AIDS shelters. OK. All that would be enough to make a normal bunch of bakers happy and even secure a solid place in Christian baking afterlife heaven. But not us. Remember we said we had a heart: Bread & Cie’s is going off. This year we’ve also decided to go micro with a project to help local neighbor Lisa Hamel. She’s cool, single, adorable and very hot … but tragically without a worthy suitor. And (here’s where the bribe part comes in because she’s the business development consultant for this great paper) if we make her happy I’m convinced I can force and shame her into cooking the numbers so Bread & Cie goes from No. 2 to the No. 1 Bakery in Gay San Diego (which we always deserved anyway). But all this only comes with your help. Here’s the deal: You readers find a “worthy suitor” for this wonderful woman. And when he warrants her affection, we’ll give you a free cherry pie. You heard me right: A free cherry pie for that guy you know who’s sitting around watching “Naked and Afraid” and could be the love of Lisa’s life. Easy breezy.

Find a guy for Lisa and make us the best bakery in San Diego. And get rewarded for these two good deeds. Easy as … well, pie. Submit names and photos to this publication via


3845 Fifth Ave, San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-1911

As one of Hillcrest’s most legendary gay bars, #1 Fifth Avenue has seen many changes since it opened in the early ’80s. Now a relaxing tavern that caters to a casual crowd, #1 Fifth Avenue boasts shirtless bartenders, attractive waiters, and an overall good energy. Conveniently located with a low-key vibe, #1 Fifth Avenue offers patrons delicious drinks at the lowest prices. A few televisions are set to whatever suits your fancy, but open-ended, friendly conversation and whatever’s playing the jukebox typically fills the air. #1 Fifth Avenue also features darts, pinball and an outdoor pool table on their back patio. An outdoor bar also allows patrons to avoid the indoor crowds during the bar’s busy hours. The courteous staff is more than willing to point out where to go and what to do in the neighborhood, however there’s nowhere quite as good to kick up your heels and throw back a drink or two at #1 Fifth Avenue.


2046 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-296-0889

Bar Cuisine UPTOWN TAVERN 1236 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-241-2710

Uptown Tavern is a unique eatery,

a hot-spot right smack dab in the middle of University Avenue, right in the heart of Hillcrest. It has become a fast favorite in the neighborhood with its renowned fresh flavors from the locally sourced menu and a slew of carefully crafted specialty cocktails. The masterful inside/outside rustic yet modern design takes full advantage of San Diego’s beautiful weather. With HD TVs playing all the right games, over 20 microbrews flowing from the taps, and an ideally located patio for people watching, Uptown Tavern is the perfect place to experience all the colorful sights that Hillcrest has to offer. As a sister restaurant to the everpopular West Coast Tavern in North Park, Uptown is quickly setting the stage for a friendly sibling rivalry. From everyday dining to evening lounging to noteworthy events, Uptown funks it up with daily specials guaranteed to tickle your fancy and a delicious weekend brunch (aka – the recovery meal!) that never fails to satisfy.




4012 30th St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-281-8700


1835 Columbia St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-544-0164

Breakfast LIL B’S

2611 El Cajon Blvd. San Diego, CA 92104 619-296-8268


425 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-2510

Brunch BOTTEGA AMERICANO 1195 Island Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 619-255-7800 308 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-491-0400


Burger SLATER’S 50/50




An eclectic twist on casual diners, Crest has been serving both locals and visitors for over thirty years, bringing friends and family together whenever

3750 Sports Arena Blvd. San Diego, CA 92110 619-226-6333 441 Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-816-1990

3845 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-1911

2750 Dewey Rd #193 San Diego, CA 92106 619-398-2600 425 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-2510

see BURGER, pg 13


BURGER they visited. The building’s design, both internal and external, are reminiscent of a hip 50s style diner. Patrons can sit inside and enjoy the groovy booths, or enjoy the quaint outdoor patio with open seating. The servers are extremely friendly and upbeat. But what keep people coming back more than anything is Crest’s quality, healthy, comfort food. Featured on The Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives,” Crest Café has earned a reputation for its Butter Burger: a half-pound beef stuffed with garlic, tarragon, basil, and parsley compound butter. But this place boasts a huge variety of breakfast lunch and dinner items that won’t break the bank: fresh hamburgers; huge salads and fresh pasta dishes; mac and cheese three ways; monster pork chop; Cecelia’s chopped salad; Belgian waffles; and homemade desserts. Conveniently located in the heart of Hillcrest, this funky cafe generously serves all menus all the time from 7 a.m. to midnight!


202 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92101 619-269-6055



Casual Dining CREST CAFE


5000 Willows Rd. Alpine, CA 91901 619-445-5400

425 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-2510


350 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-296-5862

Chinese Cuisine LUCKY LIU’S 332 J St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-255-5487

HONG KONG RESTAURANT 3871 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-9449

Cocktail #1 FIFTH AVENUE 3845 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-1911





4642 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92116 619-692-1652

5485 Casino Way El Cajon, CA 92019 619-445-6002

1245 Seventh Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 858-754-9173

3650 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-906-5566

3933 30th St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-291-1759

1458 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 hillcrestbrewingcompany 619-269-4323


3812 Grim Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-255-7136


3702 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-4666

After six years in business, The Deli Llama continues to be a favorite in the Hillcrest community.  Innovative sandwiches, top quality ingredients and great customer service are the ongoing standard, and the staff treats customers like family. The Deli Llama strives to meet customer needs by offering top quality Boar’s Head meats and cheeses, gluten-free bread choices, vegan soups, healthy drinks like Kombucha, vegetarian sandwiches and specialty chips and side dishes. They even have a loyalty prize wheel! With a whimsical circus atmosphere and lots of smiles, come see for yourself, and unleash your inner llama!


1469 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-682-4069 see BEST OF, pg 14

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015




GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


BEST OF Dessert EXTRAORDINARY DESSERTS 2929 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-294-2132


3766 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-296-4173

Dinner S&M: SAUSAGE AND MEAT 4130 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92103 619-344-2177


741 W. Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-6000



Donut Shop DONUT STAR 601 W. Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-542-1809


631 B St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-255-6360

Family Restaurant PERRY’S CAFÈ 4610 Pacific Hwy. San Diego, CA 92110 619-291-7121


425 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-2510

Farmers Market HILLCREST FARMERS MARKET 3960 Normal St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-3330

The Hillcrest Farmers Market is one of the largest and most well-known outdoor markets in all of San Diego. On any given

Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. you can find over 125 vendors with fairly priced items and a welcoming environment. Many of the local farmers participating in the market grow their produce organically or with no pesticides. They offer other activities as well, including a large number of participating arts and crafts vendors and live weekly entertainment by performers including local folk bands. They’ve added free parking and a free trolley service to your favorite farmers market! Park off Campus Avenue from Washington Street and jump on the Hillcrest Farmers Market Sunday Trolley. If you’re looking for a way to support local growers and enjoy San Diego’s sunny weather, check out this farmers market, you won’t be disappointed.


2210 Columbia St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-233-3898

Female/Male Impersonator PARIS SUKOMI GLITZ GLAM Fine Dining THE WELLINGTON 729 W. Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-6001

The Wellington is an intimate supper club in Mission Hills with a menu full of responsibly grown ingredients and an emphasis on steak. Pair that with a craft cocktail —

the Wellington is known around town for shaking a fabulous martini. And, yes, they are famous for beef Wellington, which you may now order in advance to bake at home. Owners Trish and Tom Watlington maintain a seasonal garden full of produce for the Wellington and its sister restaurant, The Red Door. Definitely make reservations in advance as the restaurant is on the small side

BERTRAND AT MISTER A’S 2550 Fifth Ave #406 San Diego, CA 92103 619-239-1377

French Cuisine LE BONNE TABLE 3696 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-260-8039


4090 Adams Ave. San Diego, CA 92116 619-255-4167

Frozen Yogurt PINKBERRY 3795 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-260-9106


1254 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-7766

Greek Cuisine ALEXI’S GREEK CAFÈ 3863 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-297-1777


2340 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-692-9082

Happy Hour #1 FIFTH AVENUE 3845 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-1911

MARTINIS ABOVE FOURTH TABLE + STAGE 3940 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-400-4500

Healthy Dining LUNA GRILL FRESH MEDITERRANEAN 350 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-296-5862


416 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 858-274-2233

Indian Cuisine BOMBAY EXOTIC CUISINE OF INDIA 3960 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-297-7777


694 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-294-8886

International Cuisine CAFÈ SEVILLA 353 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 619-233-5979

Café Sevilla has been dedicated to providing the true essence of Spanish culture, music and cuisine since 1987. Located in the heart of Downtown San Diego in the Gaslamp Quarter, Cafe Sevilla is proud to offer the most authentic Spanish ambiance in their tapas bar, restaurant and nightclub. Café Sevilla specializes in Spanish tapas or small plates, which are great for a sharable dining experience. Menu offerings include a variety of tapas to include ceviche, empanadas, calamari, Spanish meatballs, stuffed dates, patatas bravas and tortilla Espanola. Main dishes include a variety of paellas, fresh seafood and savory meat dishes. We also feature a large variety of Spanish wines and refreshing sangrias. Café Sevilla offers live entertainment in the tapas bar every night of the week, salsa dance classes, lunch offerings, a great happy hour, late night dining until 1:30 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights and a Flamenco Dinner Show every Saturday night at 7 p.m.


2253 Sunset Cliffs Blvd. San Diego, CA 92107 619-224-0606

see BEST OF, pg 15


BEST OF Italian Cuisine ARRIVEDERCI RISTORANTE 3845 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-6282

Say Arrivederci to other Italian restaurants and find “heaven on earth” right here at this popular eatery in Hillcrest. Ask any local who voted Arrivederci the No. 1 Italian Cuisine and they will tell you just how terrific they think this trattoria is with “large portions of wonderful pasta” and “hearty” secondi. “Consistently excellent daily specials” offered “at reasonable prices” and “hunky,” “pleased-to-serve-you” waiters are some of the reasons the small quarters inside and out are “always full.” Open daily for lunch and dinner.


3001 Beech St. San Diego, CA 92102 619-381-4844

Japanese Cuisine WONDERFUL SUSHI 1288 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-0240


1045 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-578-2877

Late Night Dining SAIGON ON FIFTH

The Old Globe produces a year-round season of 15 plays and musicals on its three stages, including its highly regarded Shakespeare festival. The Globe has become a gathering place for leading theater artists from around the world, such as Tom Stoppard, Daniel Sullivan, and Chita Rivera, among many others. Numerous Broadway-bound premieres and revivals, such as “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels,” “The Full Monty,” and “Damn Yankees” have been developed at The Old Globe and have gone on to enjoy highly successful runs in New York and at regional theatres across the country. The Old Globe is at the forefront of the nation’s leading performing arts organizations, setting a standard for excellence in American theater.

Leather Bar SAN DIEGO EAGLE 3040 North Park Way San Diego, CA 92104 619-295-8072


2046 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-296-0889

Lunch T DELI

1469 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-682-4069


435 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-501-3444

3900 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-220-8828

see Best Tanning, pg 21


1266 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-294-6810

Live Music Venue MARTINIS ABOVE FOURTH TABLE + STAGE 3940 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-400-4500

THE OBSERVATORY NORTH PARK 2891 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-239-8836

Live Theater Venue DIVERSIONARY THEATRE 4545 Park Blvd. #101 San Diego, CA 92116 619-220-0097

Diversionary Theatre was founded in 1986 to provide quality theater for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities. The mission of the theater is to provide an inspiring and thought provoking theatrical platform to explore complex and diverse LGBT stories, which influence the larger cultural discussion. Our vision is to foster and amplify the next generation of LGBT voices providing live entertainment in a dynamic, inclusive and provocative environment that celebrates and preserves our unique culture. Don’t miss the West Coast premiere of “Amazons and Their Men,” playing now through Oct. 3.


1363 Old Globe Way San Diego, CA 92101 619-234-5623

The internationally acclaimed, Tony Award-winning Old Globe is one of the most renowned regional theaters in the country, and has stood as San Diego’s flagship arts institution for over 75 years.

Mexican Cuisine ORTEGAS, A MEXICAN BISTRO 141 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-692-4200


1421 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-269-8510

Micro Brewery HILLCREST BREWING COMPANY 1458 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-269-4323


3812 Grim Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-255-7136

Neighborhood Bar #1 FIFTH AVENUE 3845 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-1911

REDWING BAR & GRILL 4012 30th St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-281-8700

Redwing offers a great atmosphere, cool crowd and friendly bartenders. It’s North Parks No. 1 neighborhood bar for casual drinks and bites plus popular karaoke and other theme nights. Check out the back patio for eclectic burgers and an inviting party space. The food menu offers wings, fries, deep fried pickles, burgers, chicken fingers and more! Thank you for voting us some of the best bar cuisine in San Diego!

see BEST OF, pg 16

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


BEST OF New Restaurant CIRCA

2121 Adams Ave. San Diego, CA 92116 619-269-9152

Thank you for voting us Gay San Diego’s “Best New Restaurant”! Chef Mike Almos and his wife Terri opened Circa in the University Heights neighborhood of San Diego in April 2014. Circa serves rustic, slow-cooked comfort food, locally sourced craft beers, and eclectic wines. Everything is proudly made from scratch using locally sourced produce, grass fed and antibiotic free quality meats, harkening back to a time when soda was called pop, music was played classic hi-fi stereo components, and time moved at a slower pace. Mike believes that Mother Nature is the best chef and the longer she touches the produce, the better it will taste. While he is well versed in a wide variety of culinary styles and techniques, his focus is in French theory incorporating regional flavors and old-fashioned preparation techniques to make slow-cooked rustic dishes. We greatly appreciate your support – see ya at Circa!

OSCAR WILDE’S IRISH PUB 1440 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-567-8249

Night Club RICH’S

1051 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-2195

Rich’s is San Diego’s largest and most

popular gay nightclub. We have two large, separate rooms each with a fully-stocked bar, DJ, and dance floor; a VIP area with four private VIP booths and a separate private party room that overlooks the main dance floor, and an outdoor smoking patio. Rich’s San Diego is located in the heart of Hillcrest on the main drag of University Avenue, across from the Uptown Shopping Center. We are open 10 p.m. – 2 a.m., Wednesday through Sunday. For more information check out us out online or our Facebook page at facebook. com/richssd.


3796 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-298-2233

Outdoor Bar #1 FIFTH AVENUE 3845 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-1911

URBAN MO’S BAR & GRILL 308 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-491-0400

Outdoor/Patio Dining THE PATIO ON GOLDFINCH 4020 Goldfinch St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-501-5090

The Patio on Goldfinch is one of San Diego’s hottest new restaurants, drawing customers to their convenient and stylish location just minutes from downtown on Goldfinch Street. Executive Chef John Medall has crafted a unique and delicious menu, serving breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. Some of their most popular dishes include the Crab and Ahi Tower, Kobe Burger, or the Chocolate Decadence cake. There is also a strong emphasis on alcoholic drinks at The Patio on Goldfinch, with drinks ranging from fruity cocktails to pale ales. Chris Simmons is the general manager and is also one of Southern California’s most premiere tequila connoisseurs. He has held tasting events at the restaurants to try and reintroduce the drink to his customers. “It [tequila] has changed dramatically in the past few years — so much that it really deserves a second look,” Simmons said. “It’s about time people see how great tequila is.” Patio on Goldfinch is an exciting new restaurant that features an intriguing combination of food and drink. This spot is perfect for every occasion, from relaxing brunch with the family, to a fun night out with friends. Go check them out on Goldfinch Street, open from 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.


1404 Vacation Road San Diego, CA 92109 858-490-6363

Pet Friendly Dining THE STATION

2204 Fern St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-255-0657

S&M: SAUSAGE & MEAT 4130 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92103 619-344-2177


435 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-501-3444 see BEST PIZZA, pg 17

see Best Of, pg 18



111 Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-3341

Romantic Dining TIDAL

1404 Vacation Road San Diego, CA 92109 858-490-6363


741 W. Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-6000


2400 Historic Decatur Road San Diego, CA 92106 619-226-6254


425 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-2510

Seafood MARINE ROOM 2000 Spindrift Dr. La Jolla, CA 92037 858-459-7222


750 N. Harbor Dr. San Diego, CA 92101 619-232-3474

Sports Bar SLATER’S 50/50 2750 Dewey Road #193 San Diego, CA 92106 619-398-2600

TRUE NORTH TAVERN 3815 30th St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-291-3815

Sub/Sandwich BIG FRONT DOOR 4135 Park Blvd, San Diego, CA 92103 619-255-4100

Big front door — or ‘bfd’ as its known — is a neighborhood deli providing sandwiches, salads, soups, cookies and other specialties all made in house, with top quality ingredients that are thoughtfully sourced and prepared with care. Located on Park Boulevard in University Heights and open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., they offer a fresh and diverse menu influenced by the broad dynamic of Southern California’s cultures and communities. Popular sandwiches such as the Avocado Highway, Cali Cubano or Loins of Fire have built a loyal fan

base, while salads like the Avoberry, Southwest or Sesame Chicken have a following of their very own. Specializing in take-out and ideal for picnics in any of the local parks, they also feature in house community dining as well as catering for an event or group of any size.


3702 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-4666


228 W. Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-296-1808

WONDERFUL SUSHI 1288 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-0240

Thai Cuisine AMARIN THAI 3843 Richmond St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-296-6056

LOTUS THAI RESTAURANT & WINE BAR 3761 Sixth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-8272

Vegetarian/Vegan PLUMERIA VEGETARIAN RESTAURANT 4661 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92116 619-269-9989


1905 El Cajon Blvd. San Diego, CA 92104 619-683-9490

Vietnamese Cuisine


3900 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-220-8828


10450 Friars Road San Diego, CA 92120 619-640-2985

Wine Bar WINE STEALS 1243 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-1188


1027 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-491-0100 see BEST OF, pg 18

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



BUSINESS AND RETAIL Categories are divided into



Accountant INVICTUS ADVISORS 1455 Frazee Road #500 San Diego, CA 92108 619-677-6512

JEREMY DUTSON - ABBAS, JENSON & CUNDARI CPAS 1940 Fifth Ave. #300 San Diego, CA 92101 619-298-9699

Acupuncture FIX BODY GROUP

1010 University Ave. C-203 San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-9791†

BODHI MASSAGE & WELLNESS CENTER 3678 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-274-2744

Adult Business THE CRYPT

Appliance Store SEARS OUTLET



3847 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92103 619-692-9499

3610 Barnett Ave. San Diego, CA 92110 619-224-0187

Barnett Avenue Adult Superstore is an exquisite boutique offering products and merchandise that adds spice to your life! The tasteful array of mind-opening products available include luxurious massage oils, candles, lotions, high end toys, lingerie and apparel, pleasure furniture and so much more! At Barnett, we educate you, excite you, then you go home and thrill your lover! The wellness products and merchandise help you illuminate your sexuality by offering sexy styles that are bold, racy, seductive and romantic. Take the adventure and free your boundaries and bring the fun back into your bedroom with tasteful lubes, colorful accessories and bedtoys. Visit us today. #LOVEWINS

Antiques OMAR’S CONSIGNMENTS 3847 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-1391

FIFTH AVENUE ANTIQUES 650 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-544-9040

960 Sherman St. San Diego, 92110 619-497-1123

665 15th St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-236-0616

Aztec Appliance is a local small business serving San Diego since 1972. We have been providing solutions to our customer’s major appliance needs for over 43 years and we’re happy to announce our new location opening this fall in Kearney Mesa at 4070 Kearney Mesa Rd. We guarantee to match any advertised price from our corporate big box competitors. The best appliance deal in town can be found at Aztec Appliance. We sell refrigerator, ranges, dishwashers, microwaves and laundry products from all the major appliance manufacturers like KitchenAid, Whirlpool, Maytag, GE, LG, Samsung, Electrolux and Frigidaire to name a few. We provide delivery, installation services and will help coordinate your appliance service needs. We are thankful for the thousands of San Diego County residents who support local small businesses. We are also appreciative for the “Best Appliance Store” award we received. Thank you Gay San Diego!


1040 Seventh Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 619-237-8813


530 Sixth Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 619-696-1416 see BEST OF, pg 19 FROM PAGE 18


5812 Mission Gorge Rd. San Diego, CA 92120 (855)435-0246

The DCH Auto Group has earned a stellar reputation for selling topquality new and pre-owned cars and servicing them by going above and beyond to ensure every customer is delighted with his or her purchase, lease, or vehicle service. We put an emphasis on providing exceptional customer service to both our customers and associates. Our team of professionals is here to help you make smart informed decisions to best suit your driving needs, lifestyle, and economic circumstances. Our factory trained service advisors will answer all of your questions when it comes to servicing your vehicle and help you keep your vehicle maintained in the best condition. Every DCH Honda associate is committed to providing you with sales and service experiences that exceed your expectations. We invite you to visit DCH Honda of Mission Valley today to experience for yourself the DCH way of buying, leasing, and servicing cars.

COURTESY CHEVROLET 750 Camino Del Rio N. San Diego, CA 92108 (877) 295-4648

BEST OF GAY SAN DIEGO 2015 Auto Repair Shop MISSION HILLS AUTOMOTIVE 308 Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-9367

Established in 1981, Mission Hills Automotive has a spotless reputation as an auto repair company. This company aims to do excellent service at a reasonable cost, never leaving its customers unsatisfied. Both foreign and domestic cars are serviced, and all types of auto repair are handled from under the hood service repairs and fluid changes, to accessories and custom modifications. Professional technicians are ASE Master certified and highly educated about the newest machinery and equipment in the automotive field. To ensure this, employees have ongoing training to keep up with the changing technology. Customer service is highly valued by Mission Hills Automotive, and your satisfaction is a must, with your car, the price, and the ser vice. For any questions or make an appointment and bring your car in today, go to their website or call them today.


3441 Adams Ave. San Diego, CA 92116 619-281-7722


1220 Cleveland Ave. Ste. M113, San Diego, CA 92103 619-543-0096

CALIFORNIA BANK AND TRUST 3737 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 619-299-9700

Bike Shop MISSION HILLS BIKE SHOP 141 Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-296-0618

ADAMS AVENUE BICYCLES 2602 Adams Ave. San Diego, CA 619-295-8500

Boutique MANKIND

1295B University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-497-1970

KRAVE AND KULTURE P.O. Box 601554 San Diego, CA 92160 619-857-3896


980 Camino de la Reina, Suite A, San Diego CA 92108 619-220-8008


4242 Camino Del Rio N. #14 San Diego, CA 92108 619-281-4696 see BEST OF, pg 20

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015




1010 University Ave. C-203 San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-9791


1816 Lincoln Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-543-9999

CHIROPRACTIQUE URBAN RETREAT (TIE) 2301 El Cajon Blvd. San Diego, CA 92104 619-269-9909

College/University SAN DIEGO STATE UNIVERSITY 5500 Campanile Dr. San Diego, CA 92182 619-594-5200


9500 Gilman Dr. La Jolla, CA 92093 858-534-2230

Consignment Shop OMAR’S CONSIGNMENTS 3847 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-1391


4051 Voltaire St. San Diego, CA 92107 619-225-8585

Cosmetology/Dermatology DR. WILLIAM HEIMER, HILLCREST ADVANCED AESTHETIC DERMATOLOGY 3737 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-0700

Dr. William Heimer and the team at his San Diego area practice consistently strive to achieve the best results for their patients. Whether you come to him for skin rejuvenation with microdermabrasion, or wrinkle fillers such as Restylane, or for advanced acne treatment or laser hair removal, you can rest assured Dr. Heimer and his staff will do everything in their power to make sure you leave the office satisfied. Healthy, smooth skin gives you a fresh, youthful appearance. Great skin is a key element of beauty; when your skin is well taken care of, it acquires the famous “glow”; it is “radiantly” beautiful. Though they

Arrivederci Ristorante may not be able to put their finger on the exact reason, people tend to notice something special about a person with perfect skin.

DR. GILBERT LEE, CHANGES PLASTIC SURGERY 11515 El Camino Real #150 San Diego, CA 92130 858-720-1440

Artistry with precision is the hallmark of plastic surgery performed by Gilbert Lee, M.D., FACS and Brian Reagan, M.D., FACS of Changes Plastic Surgery & Spa. Whether you are seeking a facelift, breast surgery, liposuction, rhinoplasty or need a revision of a procedure you had elsewhere, the Change’s surgeons deliver natural appearing results through technical excellence. Both Dr. Lee and Dr. Reagan have been recognized as “top docs” in plastic surgery as voted by peer physicians in the San Diego County Medical Society. Changes Plastic Surgery & Spa offers the full range of plastic surgery procedures as well as providing non-surgical enhancement. Injectable treatments such as Bellafill, Restylane, Sculptra, Botox and other products restore volume, minimize facial wrinkles or provide lip augmentation. If skin rejuvenation is what you are seeking, Changes provides state-of-the-art lasers for resurfacing and repair, hair removal and vein treatments. Learn more at their website or give them a call


502 University Ave. Suite 500 San Diego, CA 92103 (877) 732-2848

San Diego County Credit Union has been in business since 1938 and today offers its financial services to over 285,000 native San Diegans. Individuals who live in Orange County, Riverside, or those who join the Financial Fitness Association are also eligible to become members. Not only have they served San

Diego for nearly 100 years, they are also locally owned and the leading economic establishment in the area. Checking and savings accounts, mortgage loans, auto loans, online and mobile banking, and investments are readily available. We pride ourselves in being involved with over 75 local non-profit organizations such as the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Rady Children’s Hospital, San Diego Blood Bank, San Diego Humane Society and beyond. San Diego is not only your hometown, but ours as well. We understand what its like to be a native San Diegan and will help you in all your individual needs. Come stop by today!


269 Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 858-524-2850

Day Spa BODHI MASSAGE & WELLNESS CENTER 3678 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-274-2744


4637 Convoy St. #105, San Diego, CA 92111 858-279-8889

Dentist DR. JEFFREY KEENY, DDS 1807 Robinson Ave. #101 San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-1512

Jeffrey S. Keeny, DDS, is a dentist who can provide you with the exceptional service regular dental cleanings, root canals, implants, dentures, crowns, bridges, teeth whitening, dental insurance, and more. Dr. Keeny’s staff is always willing to help and can be contacted at any time to aid with any of your


BEST DENTIST dental needs. They are open from Monday to Friday and have an open schedule to fit you in at your earliest convenience. Not only is Dr. Keeny’s practice open and friendly, the location is in the heart of San Diego. Whether, you live near Fashion Valley, North Park, University Heights, Mission Hills, or other nearby locations, this establishment is just a hop, skip, and a jump away. Patients forms are available online. We hope to see you today and would love to help you have an amazing, bright beautiful smile.


2020 Camino Del Rio N. Ste 108 San Diego CA 92108 619-220-8545

Doctor DAVID SHAMBLAW, MD 2970 Fifth Ave. #140 San Diego, CA 92103 619-260-3456

Dr. David Shamblaw is a primary care physician with over 15 years of experience and specializes in general, preventive medical care, and HIV. Dr. Shamblaw truly cares about his patients and listens to each and every individual concern, by creating a welcoming and comforting environment in which patients can discuss their health. He is also a member of the American Academy of HIV Medicine, San Diego Business Association, and the San Diego County Medical Society and participates in clinical trials at his practice. Services include immunizations, routine screenings for cardiovascular disease, cancers, and sexually transmitted diseases. The practice is conveniently located in Hillcrest and offers free parking. Come make an appointment

BEST OF GAY SAN DIEGO 2015 today at Dr. Shamblaw’s office and experience genuine and exceptional care. San Diego County Credit Union has been in business since 1938 and today offers its financial services to over 285,000 native San Diegans. Individuals who live in Orange County, Riverside, or those who join the Financial Fitness Association are also eligible to become members. Not only have they served San Diego for nearly 100 years, they are also locally owned and the leading economic establishment in the area. Checking and savings accounts, mortgage loans, auto loans, online and mobile banking, and investments are readily available. We pride ourselves in being involved with over 75 local non-profit organizations such as the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Rady Children’s Hospital, San Diego Blood Bank, San Diego Humane Society and beyond. San Diego is not only your hometown, but ours as well. We understand what its like to be a native San Diegan and will help you in all your individual needs. Come stop by today!

JOSEPH LONERGAN, MD 4168 Front St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-543-3995

Dry Cleaners VERIBEST CLEANERS 419 Robinson Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-574-6239

LA MISSION CLEANERS 105 Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-4139

Financial Planner MARY STOCKTON

4365 Executive Dr. #800 San Diego, CA 92121 858-623-8945

Mary has been a successful financial advisor with Stockton Financial for nearly 20 years. In 2009 and 2012 she earned the award Agent of the Year for her local office. She has also been awarded Top Producer, Mutual Fund Leader, Annuity Elite Champion, and the Life Star Award, among others. In 2011, she was acknowledged by San Diego Pride with the Pride Community Service Award, and by the Tom Homann Law Association in 2012 with the Outstanding Service to the Community Award. In 2009, she was awarded the Mind Masters Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Prior to moving to San Diego she owned the women’s bookstore, Crones’ Harvest, in Boston. Her business became a valuable cultural center and she was honored with the Helen Diner Community Leadership Award. Locally Mary has served on the boards of Stepping Stone of San Diego, The San Diego LGBT Center and Diversionary Theatre. She currently serves as treasurer for the board of the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation. Mary is married to Alison McManus, a doctor in Nursing Practice and an activist in her own right. They live in North Park.


8889 Rio San Diego Dr. #202 San Diego, CA 92108 619-295-0200

Florist GREEN FRESH FLORALS 3785 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-544-0504

STORM INTERNATIONAL FLORIST 7297 Ronson Road San Diego, CA 92111 619-543-9599

see BEST OF, pg 22

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


BEST OF Furniture Store LAWRANCE FURNITURE 633 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-1911

COMFORT SLEEPER SALE Save an additional $300 — limited time only! These are not just sofa beds, but the ultimate sleeper sofa without sacrificing style, space and comfort. Visit our showrooms for San Diego’s most complete collection of Comfort Sleepers by American Leather — in-stock for immediate delivery. Or you can custom order and have it delivered to your home in about 30 days. THIS IS NOT A SOFA BED, IT’S AN EYECATCHING, SLEEP-INDUCING, MARVEL OF MODERN ENGINEERING. One size doesn’t fit all. That’s why we have seven of them. Choose one that fits your living space — available from King to Cot. With 80 leathers and 350 fabric options, find your personal look and choose from 16 styles including three exclusive designs only available at Lawrance. Call today for more details in San Diego 877-338-0412 and Encinitas 877-8600807.


7340 Miramar Rd. #108 San Diego, CA 92126 858-549-7999

Gym/Workout Studio FIX BODY GROUP 1010 University Ave. C-203, San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-9791†


350 10th Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 619-764-5348

Hair Salon RICHARD JOSEPH SALON 1717 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-542-1144

BEAR HAIR BY CHUCK 4002 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92103 619-694-8482

Hardware Store HILLCREST ACE HARDWARE 1007 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-5988

SAN DIEGO HARDWARE 5710 Kearny Villa Road San Diego, CA 92123 858-576-1892

Health Food Store SPROUTS FARMERS MARKET 4175 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92103 619-291-8287

WHOLE FOODS MARKET 711 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-294-2800

Hospital KAISER FOUNDATION HOSPITAL 4647 Zion Ave. San Diego CA 92120 619-528-5000

SHARP MEMORIAL HOSPITAL 2999 Health Center Dr. San Diego, CA 92123 858-939-3400

Hotel THE WESTGATE HOTEL 1055 Second Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 619-238-1818


1410 Rosecrans St. San Diego, CA 92106 619-226-6100

Jeweler STUART BENJAMIN & CO. JEWELRY DESIGNS 7510 Hazard Center Dr. San Diego, CA 92108 619-297-7666

When shopping for a ring, would you rather speak to a jewelry expert or a salesperson? An expert, of course! That’s why more people look to San Diego’s trusted third generation jeweler, Stuart Benjamin & Co. Jewelry Designs for professional knowledge on their purchase and repair. This exceptional level of service and integrity has been rewarded, with Stuart Benjamin & Co. becoming an American Gem Society (AGS) member, which only 5 percent of jewelry stores in the nation qualify. In addition, their staff are all graduates of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA), which means you can feel confident with your purchase and

iTan Hillcrest know they stand behind their jewelry and reputation of quality. From their intimate showroom highlighting a beautiful selection of bridal rings, exquisite diamonds, custom jewelry and repairs, to their award winning service, its easy to see why Stuart Benjamin & Co. Jewelry Designs, remains a favorite in San Diego.

JARED GALLERIA OF JEWELRY 1025 Camino De La Reina San Diego, CA 92108 619-278-0060


101 W. Broadway #1950 San Diego, CA 92101 619-584-0505

Rachel P. Young Law Office is a law office providing legal advice in a multitude of areas for San Diego’s diverse community. Located in Downtown San Diego, Attorney Young’s areas of practice include real estate, adoption, divorce, restraining orders, LGBT matters, injuries, and more, for both individuals and businesses. Young graduated from California Western School of Law in December 2006, was admitted to the California Bar June 2007, and immediately entered private practice, opening her office Downtown. Since then, she has handled hundreds of cases, chaired a multitude of trials (in all areas), and has substantial experience in negotiation. Being a small business, Attorney Young is able to provide clients with one on one attention, which larger firms cannot provide. She is always extremely committed to her clients, from listening to goals they want to achieve to providing in-depth explanations so that they can make informed, educated decisions. For any questions, more information, or to schedule a free consultation, call her or email ryoung@


2534 State St. #305 San Diego, CA 92101 619-233-9464

Manicure/Pedicure BEAUTY LOUNGE 3745 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-255-2591


1278 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-574-6752

see BEST OF, pg 23



1010 University Ave. C-203 San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-9791

BODHI MASSAGE & WELLNESS CENTER 3678 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-274-2744

For almost 10 years, Bodhi Massage & Wellness Center has served San Diego as a respite and neighborhood sanctuary. Located in a century-old craftsman home, nestled under a sacred ficus or “bodhi” tree, the ambiance is set before you walk in the door. The aroma of handcrafted candles and essential oils entice all who enter, and compassionate staff greets you with smiles and refreshing spa water. With services ranging from deep tissue to Thai yoga massage and couple’s treatments, there is something for everyone. You can also add-on reflexology, aromatherapy, a deep scalp treatment, or a radiant face renewal treatment to any session. Our practitioners are of the highest level of talent and handpicked based on education, experience, and the ability to provide results for our clients. The Bodhi team is dedicated to serving you with simply the best massage, acupuncture and bodywork available for many years to come.

Men's Fashion MANKIND 1295B University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-497-1970

KRAVE AND KULTURE P.O. Box 601554 San Diego, CA 92160 619-857-3896

New Business SNAKE OIL COCKTAIL COMPANY 1245 Seventh Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 858-754-9173


321 W. Washington St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-821-2840

Studio Barre (strength. defined.) in Mission Hills (SBMH) is clean, bright and welcoming and offers a specialized barre class focusing on core strength, improving posture and creating a dancer-like body. The first class is free! The barre “tenders” know how to make your thighs shake while having fun. SBMH offers classes throughout the day to meet the needs of your busy schedule. Fridays at 5:30 p.m., SBMH offers balls, beer & tuck — men get in free and a weekend toast is available to everyone. Go to our website for details, promos and events. Tuck on!

Optometrist URBAN OPTIKS

Pawn Shop HILLCREST PAWN 3748 Sixth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-284-7243

PALACE PAWNBROKERS 951 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92101 619-234-3175

Personal Trainer FIX BODY GROUP 1010 University Ave. C-203 San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-9791†


3969 Fourth Ave. #209 San Diego, CA 92103 619-869-1205

Pet Boarding/Day Care THE PET LOUNGE 3776 Fourth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-955-5588


3915 Ninth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-299-2730

3788 Park Blvd. #5 San Diego, CA 92103 619-683-2020


1010 University Ave. C-109 San Diego, CA 92103 619-955-5369

see BEST OF, pg 24

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015



GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


BEST OF Pet Groomer PET PALACE 3827 Ray St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-291-6565

YOU DIRTY DOG MOBILE PET GROOMING (mobile groomer) 619-297-6299

Pharmacy HILLCREST PHARMACY 120 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-260-1010

MEDICAL CENTER PHARMACY 3904 Park Blvd. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-3109

Real Estate Agent TONY AZAR 3930 Idaho St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-944-6901

BEST OF GAY SAN DIEGO 2015 Buying or selling a property can be a bewildering and stressful ordeal. But with the help of an expert, this potentially perplexing experience can be made trouble-free. One such qualified individual is Tony Azar. As a long-time resident of San Diego and an active member of the San Diego Association of Realtors, Tony is more than just a realtor. Tony is dedicated to the needs of his clients whether in residential, income or commercial real estate. He strives to make each client’s buying or selling experience one that is truly positive and carefree. If you or someone you know is thinking of buying or selling a home, income or commercial property, call Tony Azar for guidance and advice on any and all of your real estate needs. He will also provide you with a complimentary Home Buyers/Sellers Guide or a market analysis of your property.


410 Kalmia St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-865-1389

Real Estate Office ASCENT REAL ESTATE 410 Kalmia St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-325-4100

Ascent Real Estate’s professional team of realtors has tracked over $4 billion in sales volume since 2005. While, according to Sandicor MLS, the company is the

county’s largest independent real estate brokerage based on units sold in 2014, Ascent manages every transaction with personal “above and beyond” standards of service. The company’s mission is to hire, develop, and retain the real estate industry’s most respected agents; cultivating a work environment that is cutting edge, diverse, ethical, compassionate, and strong in its convictions. Ascent Real Estate has eight offices throughout San Diego in Bankers Hill, Coronado, Downtown, Kensington, La Jolla, Mission Hills, North Park, and Point Loma

THE METROPOLITAN GROUP 3930 Idaho St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-260-1977

Resale Thrift Shop BUFFALO EXCHANGE 3862 Fifth Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-298-4411


1219 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-795-6630

Retirement Living ST. PAUL’S SENIOR LIVING 328 Maple St. San Diego, CA 92103 619-239-6900

Since 1960, St. Paul’s Senior Services has been dedicated to serving the physical, spiritual and social needs of the elderly and community. Through independent, assisted living and skilled nursing communities as well as an intergenerational day care program and Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE), St. Paul’s provides affordable, innovative and comprehensive programs in a non

denominational environment with great value placed on optimal independence at all stages of life. Our history of innovative programs and services have been guided by our overall mission and vision. We look forward to another 50 years of service to San Diego seniors and would love to give you a tour of any of our communities or programs.

MERRILL GARDENS 2567 2nd Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-752-1099


660 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-298-1826

iTAN Hillcrest has been serving the community since 2009. We offer several Sun, Spray, and Spa services including Versa Spa, Mystic HD, Hydration Station and FIT Body Wraps, among others. Our knowledgeable staff is ready to assist with any of your needs and is educated on the smartest way to tan. We strive to provide the highest standards of cleanliness and customer service to our clients for the best experience each and every visit. From skin sensing beds to the newest spray formulas, iTAN provides the latest in self-administered sun, spray, and spa technology.

Tattoo/Piercing Studio FULL CIRCLE 2312 30th St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-226-6575

DR. JEFE’S (APOGEE BODY PIERCING) 4944 Newport Ave. San Diego, CA 92107 619-223-1771


433 Brookes Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-239-7027

THE GENTLEMEN’S TUX CLUB 999 F St. San Diego, CA 92101 619-239-8901

Veterinary Hospital BODHI VETERINARY CLINIC AND ANIMAL HOSPITAL 2200 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-677-6366

Bodhi Veterinary Clinic and Animal Hospital is devoted to your pets and offers the upmost care and quality service to your beloved friend, furry or scaly. We have a state of the art facility that has the latest technology, a surgical room, and a fully equipped laboratory on site for cultures and both blood and urine analysis. We offer both Eastern and Western medicinal practices to ensure your pet’s health and well-being in our safe and welcoming environment. Some of our services are more traditional than others. We offer annual wellness examinations, microchip implants, vaccinations, parasite prevention, dieting, and hospice care. We also offer nontraditional services such laser therapy, ultrasound, and digital radiology. Give us a call today at (619) 677-6366 and we would love to meet your beloved friend and help in your pet’s very own needs.

KENSINGTON VETERINARY HOSPITAL 3817 Adams Ave. San Diego, CA 92116 619-584-8418

Women's Fashion MIMI AND RED 3041 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-298-7933


2871 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92104 619-297-3040

Wedding Venue FRANCIS PARKER WEDDINGS 4201 Randolph St. San Diego, CA 92103 858-569-7900

CUVIER CLUB BALLROOM 7776 Eads Ave. La Jolla, CA 92037 858-367-7748

Yoga Studio PILGRIMAGE OF THE HEART 3800 30th St. San Diego, CA 92104 619-677-2022


1080 University Ave. San Diego, CA 92103 619-295-9642


GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


Chardonnay, the horse Gardner and Kerber rescued at age 2, is the inspiration for the sanctuary and its name (Courtesy Villa Chardonnay)

Sam (left), who is blind, is one of 132 special-needs horses that live at the sanctuary (Courtesy Villa Chardonay) FROM PAGE 1

HORSES and Garber saved from the slaughterhouse when it was just 2-years-old — Villa Chardonnay now houses a total of 132 specialneeds horses including Chardonnay, as well as 14 dogs, 52 cats, 3 turkeys, 3 goats and 8 donkeys. The couple — together for 16 years and married since 2008 — live on the property to ensure 24-hour care of the animals. They also support other rescues in the region and will continue to do so, housing any animal in need, with a focus on special-needs animals. The difference between a sanctuar y and a rescue is that

rescues generally rehabilitate abandoned animals for re-ownership while sanctuaries often house animals for long-term since they are usually injured, maimed or have physical ailments that make them unable to be offered up for new ownership. Villa Chardonnay’s mission, the couple say in marketing materials, is “dedicated to the compassionate care of animals, primarily horses. We provide love, a permanent home and critical care for abused, neglected, slaughter bound and/or abandoned creatures. Our ultimate goal is to improve animal rights, eliminate abusive training and be the voice for those who cannot speak.” Many of the horses at the cage-free, no-kill facility are former

racehorses destined for the slaughterhouse, including Nitro Active, a descendant (“great grandson”) of Triple Crown winner Secretariat. They are either ready to retire or injured and unable to be ridden any longer. Other horses are older may be blind or have other medical conditions, such as Cushing’s disease, a dysfunction of the pituitary gland. The couple is currently in escrow for a 40-acre lot in San Diego County, but must close escrow and have money to transport all the animals, paddocks and supplies before the end of September. As a result, they are urgently trying to raise $375,000 before Sept. 30. The new fully fenced property near Ramona has enough acreage to house all their animals and will allow them to almost double in size.

“We are excited for the move to San Diego to better support the community with therapy programs for troubled youth working with horses,” Gardner said. The animal lovers said they have reached out to everyone they can think of to assist in the effort — from foundations and animal rights groups, to corporations and celebrities, to their network of friends and the media — and are looking for donations large and small. “The support of San Diego has been amazing,” Gardner said. “We are so grateful for the donations that are coming in, we even had a little girl send us $3. While we have made a dent in the overall funding needed, we still have a long way to go and are hopeful all animal lovers will make their onetime donation of $75 or more.” Both professional career women, the sanctuary has become the couple’s life mission. Kerber left her marketing job in 2013 to work at the sanctuary full time and start a pet supply business, which can be found at Gardner, who has been a

manufacturing executive her entire career, now works as a consultant to the industry, in order to focus on Villa Chardonnay. “The LGBT community loves those who love to help others,” said Los Angeles-based LGBT activist Robin Tyler. “These two lesbian friends of mine have nurtured and cared for over 1,000 animals during the last 12 years. Now it is time for us to help them, as they have given their lives helping these amazing animals that now need a new home in a larger facility. Please donate to their effort. That is what family means.” Villa Chardonnay is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, so all donations for the cause are tax-deductible. Financial assistance can be made directly through their website, at or mailed to Villa Chardonnay, 42200 Calle Barbona, Temecula, CA 92592. To learn more about this animal sanctuary and what they do, visit their website. —Morgan M. Hurley can be reached at


GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


Buona Forchetta in South Park is teaming up with Bice Ristorante from the Gaslamp District to open a hybrid restaurant in Liberty Station that will feature two ovens currently being custom built in Italy; one designated for standard Neapolitan pizzas and the other for gluten-free pizzas. Buona Forchetta owner Matteo Cattaneo tells us a name for the upcoming venture has yet to be decided, but he assures the interior design “is going to be like a beautiful home restaurant.” Entrees and housemade pasta dishes will also appear on the menu. The restaurant is slated to open by the end of January at 2865 Sims Road, Suite 104.

Brew Project will be opening in the old R Gang Eatery space on Fifth Avenue (Courtesy Brew Project)

A Texas-built smoker is rolling into North Park next month. (Photo by Andy Harris) North Park is about to see smoke as Andy Harris prepares to open Grand Ole BBQ y Asado in the space adjoining Ripe Produce, located at the quaint intersection of 32nd and Thorn streets. Harris ran a catering company for the past four years while working in the national music industry. He has also conducted road-style barbecue pop-ups and briefly tested his concept for the eatery earlier this year in the same space he’ll permanently move into around the first week of October. “I would sell out of food everyday,” he said. “But I’ll have triple the production this time around.” Harris’ specialty is central Texas and Argentine-style barbecue, using in part a jumbo smoker he bought in Austin, Texas, as well as a wood-fired grill. 3302 32nd St.

The cheese wheel devoted to cooking risotto at Monello (Courtesy Chemistry PR)

Various risotto dishes that change weekly are receiving special treatment every Wednesday (from 5 p.m. to closing) at Monello in Little Italy, where the Italian rice is cooked tableside in a prized raspadura parmesan wheel imported from Italy. The risotto entrees cost $25 on average and are large enough to share among two or three people. 750 W. Fir St., 619-501-0030.

San Diego beer specialist Beau Schmitt has appointed Tom Miller as executive chef to his upcoming Brew Project in Hillcrest, which will open in mid-October in the space previously occupied by R Gang Eater y. Miller recently served as sous chef for Ballast Point in Miramar. Schmitt cites last-minute inspections and final cosmetic upgrades to the space as reasons for the delay in opening, which was originally set for July. “We want to make sure we open right rather than rush into it,” he said. Brew Project will feature all local craft beers from 30 taps and a cocktail program spotlighting locally distilled spirits that will be headed by Schmitt’s business partner, Mike Sill, formerly of Quality Social. Some of the established menu items include chicken-and-waffle skewers, mole-barbecue chicken sandwiches, plus various tortas and salads. 3683 Fifth Ave., A second location of Café Madeleine is coming to North Park in late October, next door to Barn Brewer y. Owner Christine Perez says the new outlet will be twice the size of her established creper y in South Park, and that the menu will be more extensive. The space dates back to the 1960s, when it operated as Taste of Sweden. “We’ll be incorporating some of those original trusses into the layout, as well as a European-style coffee bar,” says Perez. 2850 El Cajon Blvd. Chef, comedian and artist Karl Prohaska of The Culinar y Freight Train will be the man behind the smoker at the annual “wing ding” at Carnitas Snack Shack in North Park, from 2:30 – 7 p.m., Sept. 27. The wings will be tossed in five different sauces and sold in various quantities in the shack’s rear “pig pen” patio, which also features a bar stocked with local craft beers and a big screen that will air Sunday football. 2632 University Ave., 619-294-7675. —Frank Sabatini Jr. can be reached at


GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015


Bay Park’s

European Union

Dan Diego’s Euro Café and Pub 2415 Morena Blvd. (Bay Park)

(l to r) International flags define Dan Diego’s; open-face Reuben on soda bread; Irish stew (Photos by Frank Sabatini Jr.)

Restaurant Review Frank Sabatini Jr. Name a country on the European continent and you’ll most likely find a beer or dish representing that nation at Dan Diego’s Euro Café and Pub. Festooned with an array of international flags on its façade and roof, the converted house, built in the 1940s, stands out like a culinary oasis along this restaurant-deprived stretch of Morena Boulevard. Inside, visitors are greeted by a central bar accented in green, recessed lighting. Celtic spirals are painted on the ceiling. Homey curtains frame the old windows, and a stained-glass panel incorporating a shamrock further attests that housecured corned beef and lots of Guinness and Smithwick’s rule the day. Chef-owner Ryan Fulton opened the establishment two years ago, naming it in part after his late brother, a successful sound engineer who was known within the industry as “Dan from San Diego.” Fulton, a passionate self-taught chef, previously worked at Fiddler’s Green in Shelter Island and The Dana on Mission Bay. His menu reflects not only his half-Irish, half-Italian heritage, but a desire to spotlight classic dishes from other European countries as well, such as French-style cheese boards, German wiener schnitzel, and Englishstyle shepherd’s pie. The ambitious concept also folds in American cuisine, should you prefer meatloaf and mashed potatoes over black-and-white pudding, which are sausages infused with pork blood that Fulton imports from Ireland. Other links, such as bratwurst, chicken liverwurst, and bangers with white pepper and sage, are crafted in-house and without casings. In addition, more than 150 bottled beers of every style and origin join up with a variety of local crafts on draft. Equally impressive is the

Hillcrest Newsstand

Featuring San Diego’s best collection of hard to find international magazines! We also carry all your favorite local & national publications, as well as souvenirs, snacks and lotto tickets!

529 University Ave.- Hillcrest (619) 260-0492

list of specialty ciders, some of them not easily found such as Rekorderlig Wild Berries and Sir Perry Pear. From the few Italian dishes on the menu, we tried the wedding soup as a starter. It wasn’t the traditional recipe I grew up with, which as a kid would excite me with its mini pork meatballs and earthy escarole. This featured one large and under-seasoned beef ball that broke into granules the moment my spoon touched it. And the cabbage I detected floating within threw it way off course. A cup of Irish beef stew we ordered was extraordinarily better as it captured tender chunks of beef, carrots and potatoes in a thick, dark Guinness gravy. The flavor of the beer rang through exquisitely.

Another starter, French-Canadian poutine, didn’t disappoint, although it too veered from its roots. Basically fries covered in cheese curds and brown gravy, the potatoes were cut into thicker-thanusual wedges. The curds were more cheddar-y than most. And the gravy was gluten-free and oddly gelatinous, but flavorful nonetheless. Not listed in the menu description was the surprise crowning of cubed pork, which resulted in a heartier outcome that isn’t really needed in poutine. To our disappointment, the same gravy appeared on my companion’s wiener schnitzel. The classic beauty of these pounded-out and breaded pork filets are that they need nothing on them except for a spritz of fresh

lemon. The gravy basically killed the potential crispiness of the breading. Served alongside was tender red cabbage sporting excellent sweet and sour notes, as well as German potato salad that tasted unrecognizable compared to others I’ve had in Europe and the U.S. The sour and hammy notes were absent. Fulton cures his corned beef for two weeks and then braises it in water, Guinness and cider. He also makes his own soda bread and uses it as the foundation for an open-face Reuben, which I found deliciously novel. Also, instead of the usual Thousand Island dressing, he smears in tangy horseradish sauce to keep it lively and beer-friendly. We skipped dessert, which includes house-made fruit cobbler, spumoni ice cream, and naturally, bread pudding with Jameson’s caramel sauce. Fulton describes his venture as a “word-of-mouth” restaurant, adding that his goal is to give the residents of Bay Park a cosmopolitan dining experience suited for families and beer drinkers alike. Depending on what benchmarks you apply to some of his international dishes, a culinary journey to the Old World possibly awaits.

619-276-2100 Prices:

Starters, soups and salads, $3.50 to $12; sandwiches and burgers, $10 to $15; entrees, $13 to $22. Breakfast and weekend brunch: $6 to $14. —Frank Sabatini Jr. is the author of “Secret San Diego” (ECW Press), and began his local writing career more than two decades ago as a staffer for the former San Diego Tribune. You can reach him at

Pork schnitzel

(Photo by Frank Sabatini Jr.)

28 28

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept.SAN18DIEGO - Oct 1, 2015 GAY Sept. 18 – Oct 1, 2015


House party and AIDS Walk fundraiser: This event by the North County LGBTQ Resource Center will raise money for their San Diego AIDS Walk and Run team. It will feature raffles, light appetizers and a no host bar. $20 at the door. 6 – 9 p.m. Private residence, 4866 Hillside Drive, Carlsbad. Visit 21st annual San Diego Festival of Beer: Indoor/ outdoor event featuring live music and unlimited 2-ounce beer tastes from nearly 60 breweries. Fundraiser for San Diego Professionals Against Cancer. 6 – 10 p.m. Broadway Pier, 1000 North Harbor Drive, Downtown. Visit Kaaboo Del Mar Festival: This weekend-long festival features big name bands – No Doubt, The Killers, Train – along with local acts – The Midnight Pine, The Silent Comedy, and more. There will also be comedy performances including Joel McHale, Lewis Black, Chris D’elia. 7 p.m. Visit ‘The Godfather: Part III’: Cinema Under the Stars presents the final film in Francis Ford Coppola’s celebrated American crime trilogy. Additional screening Saturday, Sept. 19. 8 p.m. $15. 4040 Goldfinch St., Mission Hills. For more info visit topspresents. com or call 619-295-4221.


Scavenger Hunt with San Diego Pride: San Diego Pride will be participating in this event for the Balboa Park Centennial Celebration. Teams of 1 – 4 will get a list of clues leading to different locations throughout Balboa Park. Prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place teams. $20 registration; proceeds go to Balboa Park Maintenance Fund. Registration at 8 a.m.; hunt from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Starts at St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral, 1549 El Prado. Visit scavengerhunt. Gay For Good build at Border Field State Park: Volunteer group Gay for Good San Diego is partnering with 4 Walls International for this build at the “Creative Gathering Place” at Border Field State Park. Activities will include sign repair, pounding tires, and more. Bring gloves, water, closed-toe shoes, and sunscreen. Border Field State Park, 1500 Monument Road. Visit groups/135548853145220. Girls Night Out San

Diego: Monthly dance for the local women’s community, consisting of a night filled with dance music, celebrations, flash mob dances and more. Jennifer Corday will perform from 6 – 7 p.m. Local “music master” SuSu Jones will be spinning from 7 – 10 p.m. $10. 6 p.m. Brass Rail, 3796 Fifth Ave., Hillcrest. Prepay for tickets via PayPal using email ThatsSoGayLIVE@ Visit LezDanceSanDiego.


San Diego Restaurant Week: This yearly event by the San Diego Chapter of the California Restaurant Association brings special prix fixe dining menus to tons of local restaurants. Participating restaurants of interest include: The Smoking Goat, Bankers Hill Bar and Restaurant, Barrio Star, Croce’s Park West, D Bar, The Red Door Restaurant and Wine Bar, The Wellington Steak and Martini Lounge, La Bonne Table, A Modo Mio, Hexagone, and more more. Continues through Sunday, Sept. 27. Visit Souleil: This event will features live entertainment by Fred Ever ything, Lars Behrenroth, Joe Pea with resident DJs Ala, Mikeytown and Cris Herrera. $3 cover includes $3 food coupon. 3 – 10 p.m. Gossip Grill, 1220 University Ave., Hillcrest. Visit souleil2015. San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus presents ‘Encore Countr y Style’: This event benefits the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus (SDGMC) and celebrates its 30th anniversar y. American Idol contestant Keith London and Jonathan Wiley will be the featured performers with SDGMC singers opening the night. Tickets include hors d’oeuvres by MA4. $75 - $125 reser ved seating. 4 p.m. Martinis Above Fourth, 3940 Fourth Ave., Hillcrest. Visit


Nightly dinner cruise: Flagship hosts a three-course dinner cruise each night. Includes: boarding Champagne, entertainment, free WiFi, dancing and 25 miles of San Diego view. Boarding at 7 p.m.; cruising 7:30 – 10 p.m. 990 North Harbor Drive. Visit


LGBT Militar y Support Group: For LGBT active duty ser vice members and their families — meeting on

the fourth Tuesday of ever y month. Open for couples with or without children. 6 – 7:30 p.m. For more information, contact Caroline Bender at 619-222-5586 or caroline.bender.ctr@navy. mil. San Diego LGBT Center, 3909 Centre St., Hillcrest. Visit


Date Night at Croce’s: Ever y Wednesday get a shared appetizer, two entrees, a bottle of wine, Croce’s ambiance and live music for just $49. Tonight’s live music is Patrick Dowling, whose major influences are Ben Harper, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Jack Johnson. 6 – 9:30 p.m. 2760 Fifth Ave. #100, Bankers Hill. Visit


Countr y star Ty Herndon in ‘Journey On’: Longtime countr y music star Ty Herndon has been touring in support of his album “Journey On” since 2010. The deeply personal album marks Herndon’s first foray into songwriting. Doors open at 6 p.m., show at 8 p.m. $40 – $50 reser ved seating with $15 food/drink minimum. Martinis Above Fourth, 3940 Fourth Ave., Hillcrest. Visit PrideFIT hike club: Meets ever y Thursday, hosted by Carlos Salazar. 7 p.m. Parking lot at Golfcrest Avenue and Navajo Road. Visit prideFITsandiego. ‘The Blues Brothers’: Cinema Under the Stars presents the cult classic starring John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd as musician brothers. Additional screenings on Friday, Sept. 25 and Saturday Sept. 26. 8 p.m. $15. 4040 Goldfinch St., Mission Hills. For more info visit or call 619295-4221.


Top of the Bay: Weekly LGBT happy hour featuring cocktail specials, shuttle ser vice from The Loft and The Caliph, and more. Glass Door, 1835 Columbia St., Little Italy. Visit TopOfTheBaySanDiego.


Trolley Dances: For the 17th year, Trolley Dances will host tours on the trolley with choreographers and dancers onboard for six guided tours today, Sunday, Sept. 27, Saturday, Oct. 3 and Sunday, Oct. 4. Tours start Downtown at the County

Administration Building (1600 Pacific Highway) and end at Balboa Park. Tickets are $35 ($25 for seniors, $15 for students/ militar y) and include an all-day trolley pass and admission to Mingei International Museum. Visit AIDS Walk San Diego: Over 8,000 participants are expected for this year’s AIDS Walk/Run. The event is a remembrance for those who have been lost to the disease and a fundraiser to support those living with HIV/ AIDS. Registration starts at 6 a.m.; opening ceremonies begin at 7 a.m. San Diego LGBT Community Center, 3909 Centre St., Hillcrest. Visit Mama’s Kitchen 25th anniversar y: This event will feature a family-style dinner by Just Call Us Catering. The goal of this anniversar y celebration is to raise half of Mama’s Kitchen’s food bill for the year: $500,000. 6 p.m. Illumina Campus, 5200 Illumina Way, University City. Visit Tickets_Grocer yList. PrideFIT walk club: Meets ever y Saturday, hosted by Maribel. 10 a.m. Corner of Sixth Avenue and Upas Street. Visit prideFITsandiego.


View the total lunar eclipse: Cabrillo National Monument will host a special viewing for the lunar eclipse (also a supermoon) with telescopes provided by The San Diego Astronomy Club. Music and refreshments will be provided, flashlights encouraged. Tickets are $30 per car (maximum 10 people per car);

parking is free. Check-in will be between 6 – 7 p.m. (no late checkins). The event raises funds for San Diego’s only national park. 1800 Cabrillo Monument Drive, Point Loma. Visit for tickets. ‘Rainbow River: An LGBT Artist’s Retrospective’: San Diego Pride is hosting this event featuring RD Riccoboni’s work chronicling watershed moments in LGBT histor y. Signed and numbered copies of his rendition of the Pride rainbow flag flying from the Museum of Man will be on sale. Light refreshments and open bar provided. $20 suggested


PrideFIT run club: Meets ever y Monday, hosted by Miguel Larios. 6:30 p.m. Corner of Sixth Avenue and Upas Street. Visit prideFITsandiego.


Pride by the Beach Drag Show: This event will feature San Diego Kings Rudy Ramrod, Whiskey Dick, and Craven Moorehead; plus the Dreamgirls Revue, Chad Michaels and more. $5. 8 p.m. Rookies Sports Bar, 2216 El Camino Real, Oceanside. Visit


‘Know Your Rights’ Town Hall meeting: Hosted by the Know Your Rights Initiative/ California, this event will discuss Social Security benefits newly available to LGBT militar y veterans. Free. Reception at 8:30 a.m., discussion at 9 a.m. (second meeting at 6 p.m.). Ohr Shalom Synagogue, 2512 Third Ave., Bankers Hill. Visit ‘Blue Prints to Freedom: An Ode to Bayard Rustin’: The play written by and starring Michael Benjamin Washington centers on civil rights activist Bayard Rustin. This performance features a special pre-show presentation by Playhouse staff highlighting the history and making of the play. Tickets start at $20. 6:45 p.m. La Jolla Playhouse, 2910 La Jolla Village Drive, La Jolla. Visit


‘Notorious’: Cinema Under the Stars presents this Alfred Hitchcock film starring Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman. Additional screenings on Friday, Oct. 2 and Saturday, Oct. 3. 8 p.m. $15. 4040 Goldfinch St., Mission Hills. For more info, visit topspresents. com or call 619-295-4221. —Compiled by Jen Van Tieghem. Email calendar items to morgan@ sdcnn.comt


solution on page 31

BEARDED LADIES ACROSS 1 Publisher and friend of Moss Hart 5 DC tourist district 9 Jack, known for licking it clean 14 “June Is Bustin’ Out All ___” 15 _La Traviata_ solo 16 Taking it lying down 17 She played Glinda in “The Wiz” 18 Sourpuss 19 Prudential rival 20 Fran, who married Peter Marc Jacobson 22 Carrie, who married Bryan Lourd 23 Debtor’s slips 24 Marine birds 25 Mothers, to Verlaine 28 Fairy story 30 Double-reed instrument 34 Bring to bear 35 Carol, who married Charles Lowe 37 Great service from Mauresmo 38 The USA, to Monika Treut

donation benefits San Diego Pride. 2121 Fifth Ave., Suite 205, Bankers Hill. Visit SanDiegoLGBTPride. #BeTheGeneration September Bar Crawl: A fun bar crawl promoting The Center’s campaign to end new cases of HIV in San Diego the day after AIDS Walk San Diego. Starts at 3:30 p.m. Babycakes San Diego, 3766 Fifth Ave., Hillcrest. Visit bethegeneration.

DOWN 41 Prefix with room 42 Vanessa, who was married to Tony Richardson 44 General drift 46 In addition 47 Org. that could help you see Uranus 49 Gay rodeo fans may come in them 50 Conversant about 52 Car from Sweden 54 Janet, who was married to Adrian 57 Liza, who was married to Peter Allen (or, her dad) 61 Yellow Brick way and others 62 Abominable snowman 63 Superman portrayer Dean 64 Shoreline opening 65 Going full tilt 66 Traci Des Jardins, for one 67 Jury members that may be, well, hung 68 High place with a flat top 69 Pisa’s river

1 Word before cock 2 At any point 3 Director Norman of “Prelude to a Kiss” 4 Sitcom with John Mahoney 5 Peru’s ___ Picchu 6 Police response to gays in public, once 7 One with a tricky tongue 8 Where to look for the “gay gene” 9 Rainy country for Eliza Doolittle 10 Like some nails 11 Kind of IRA 12 A girl named Frank 13 Cause of the Tin Woodsman’s rust 21 Doris Day to Rock Hudson, often 22 Neat ___ (half of the Odd Couple) 24 Precollege ed 25 Stiller’s partner, once 26 Rise to the top 27 Actor Robert and family 29 Places for erections 31 Risky fellatio partner?

32 Erect 33 “Great balls of fire!” 36 Lane of “The Birdcage” 39 Bruce Wayne kept Dick in one 40 Wolfson of Freedom to Marry 43 Head for the bottom 45 DeMornay of “Risky Business” 48 Given this situation 51 Newsgroup messages 53 “West Side Story” girl 54 Worker on Broadway 55 Tops 56 Jodie Foster’s alma mater 57 Portion (out) 58 Cowardly lion actor 59 Property right 60 411 62 Orange veggie


BENNY p.m. at Numbers sponsored by In The Mix. Check out a list of additional AIDS Walk team fundraisers here: Another way that I like to get a good amount of exercise in is by dancing. And those who know me have seen me dance that night away at one my favorite Hillcrest bar events, Havana Nights at #1 Fifth Avenue. This monthly event is always packed and filled with energy as Manny Cepeda and his orchestra perform live from 8 p.m. to midnight, followed by music by DJ V until closing. My legs are usually mush by the end of the night but I always have a great time. There’s no cover charge. #1 Fifth Avenue is located 3845 Fifth Ave., Hillcrest. As always, there is no shortage of events in our community and my schedule is packed for the next month, and probably through the end of the year but I’m afraid to look that far ahead on my calendar. On the day after AIDS Walk, I’m


LETTERS Art and jazz

Thank you for shedding a spotlight on deliberate distortions [see “Deliberate Distortions,” Vol. 6, Issue 18]. Congratulations to all of our artists in the show and working in the studios. It’s been a ver y exciting first year for ever yone connected to The Studio Door. Looking for ward to our community stopping in for the exhibition. The Door is always open to artists and art lovers. —Patric Stillman, via

Louganis’ upbringing I believe he was a resident of El Cajon … not San Diego [see “Louganis returns to San Diego,” Vol. 6, Issue 8]. His story was shown

looking forward to heading over to North Park to visit the grand opening of my friend Dr. Angel OchoaRea’s new wellness center, LGBT Chiropractic. As the name of his practice suggests, he has a special focus on serving the LGBT community, although everyone is certainly welcome. The ribbon-cutting event will take place on Sunday, Sept. 27 from 5 – 7 p.m., and include music, mingling, and Mexican cuisine. Visit On Monday, Sept. 28 at 7 pm, the Lambda Archives will host their next “Out at The Archives” event, celebrating the Hispanic LGBT Community. Participants will learn more about the contributions of the Hispanic LGBT community and it will feature a panel discussion with members of the Hispanic and Latino LGBT communities. For more information visit San Diego’s first Red Dress Party is set to take place on Saturday, Oct. 3 at the San Diego Museum of Man. The organizers of this event have been working really hard to bring this event to town, and I encourage everyone who can to attend! Yes, wearing a red dress is

required, but it’s a lot of fun and all proceeds benefit HIV/AIDS services in San Diego. For more information visit And since we’re approaching October, mark your calendar for Saturday, Oct. 17 at 11:55 p.m.! The YPC will be doing a group viewing of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show!” It’s also the 40th anniversary of the film’s release so mark your calendars (more on this and other Halloween events next month). The Center’s Young Professionals Council (YPC) will also be visiting the Lambda Archives on Tuesday, Oct. 6 at 6:30 p.m. for a tour of the space, presentation about San Diego’s vibrant LGBT history, and a mixer to follow. Everyone is welcome to attend (it’s not required that you be ‘young’ or even ‘professional’ for that matter!). Visit tinyurl. com/q7l5eua. The weekend following the Red Dress Party we switch to orange, when the San Diego Ambassadors of The Trevor Project will host “A Night Out For Trevor: The Orange Party.” This fun party will have food, drinks, live entertainment and more on Saturday, Oct. 10 at 7 pm at the Palomar Hotel San

recently on HBO, and there is no mention of San Diego in his story. —Joel Pointon, via

to handle his communications for several years after all that. Since then, he has sold the Manchester Grand Hyatt (more than two years ago now) and the new company, Host Hotels, is very supportive of the LGBT community and does a great deal of outreach and inclusion to them. Unfortunately, part of the purchase contract required that his name “Manchester” remain on the property for 20 years … but he is no longer associated with the hotel whatsoever. We’ve written stories in the past that state this fact, but can’t include that every time the hotel is mentioned in each of our papers. —Ed.

Editor’s Note: Louganis was raised and attended school in El Cajon, California, which resides in the County of San Diego and is considered part of the greater San Diego area for this piece. —Ed.

Manchester woes Please do not give Doug Manchester or his businesses any future mentions in your paper, you do know he does not support gay people right? —Mike Metzger, via email

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015

Diego. Trevor Project provides life-saving services to youth in need and worth supporting. Visit tinyurl. com/p8ezm4m. Also happening that day is North County Pride by the Beach on Saturday, Oct. 10 from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. outside the Oceanside Civic Center. The Southern California Pride season doesn’t actually end with the departure of summer, it goes all the way through November when Palm Springs Pride hits (more on that next month, too). Pride by the Beach is a lot of fun and worth the drive for those who live in Central San Diego. Visit And finally, find me at the Brass Rail on Sunday, Oct. 11 for the first Hillcrest Oktoberfest. The event will include beer tasting, brats & food, live bands and music, and more. Several fun community folks

(like myself) will be pouring beer for you all day, and I believe I’ll be pouring from the Ballast Point tap. Come join us for this fun fall celebration! Visit See, I told you there’s never a shortage of things to do around town (and what I listed above is just a small sampling of things going on)! It wore me out writing this column just thinking about all of the events I need to be at over the next couple of weeks, but I need to stay strong so I can maximize the number of squats I do for my AIDS Walk fundraiser! See you around town! —Benny Cartwright is the director of community outreach at the San Diego LGBT Community Center. He can be reached at 619-692-2077 ext. 106 or outreach@thecentersd. org. Note: Byline photo by Rob Lucas Modern Aperture Photography.t

Editor’s Note: We are aware that Mr. Manchester donated $125,000 to Prop 8 years ago. A large boycott hurt him back then (to the tune of nearly $7 million) and he hired a gay man














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STONEWALL was on board immediately. “The script had me in pieces when I first read it,” he admitted. Blown away by the writing and eager for the role, he hopped on a Londonbound plane from Budapest, where he’d been filming another project, and showed up at Emmerich’s door, a scratch pad full of Stonewall notes in hand. “I really chased it,” Irvine said. “The script was by far the best thing I’d read in months. It wasn’t a difficult decision to go after it.” But still, Irvine was nervous. Would they get it right? He knew the LGBT community’s expectations would be inevitably high. “There’s a responsibility involved to do a story justice,” he said. When shooting in NYC on

Christopher Street where the mayhem originally unfolded in front of the Stonewall Inn — didn’t pan out as hoped because there were too many people, and not enough time — the crew used an indoor facility in Montreal, leaving Emmerich questioning its true-to-life authenticity. “I panicked every day,” he remembered. During the weeklong riot shoot, feelings were intense. Lots of reflection. Lots of commemorating. “That whole sequence was a ver y emotionally charged piece to shoot,” recalled Ir vine, who throws the brick in the film, mirroring the famously charged real-life moment. “We’re shooting with a lot of actors and people on the set who have a ver y personal relationship to the stor y. Ver y meaningful to them.” Others emotions [and, ahem, things] were present while Ir vine

shot his gay sex-scene debut with Jonathan Rhys Meyers, whose character represents one of the earliest gay rights groups in the U.S., the Mattachine Society, and crushes hard on Ir vine’s new-kid-on-the-block character. Eventually they end up in bed. And with their clothes off. “It was my first gay sex scene in a film, and hey, to be honest, if you’re gonna do it, Jonathan Rhys Myers is not a bad choice,” Ir vine said, noting he’s only filmed one other sex scene, guy-on-girl, before. “I’m pretty green to all that. And Jonathan obviously did ‘The Tudors,’ and so he said, ‘Just relax. I used to do, like, 10 of these a day.’ So he was ver y cool. He took my hand. Took me through it.” “Jonathan totally took charge,” Emmerich added. As he reflected on directing the scene, Emmerich chuckled,

GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015 admitting to making special accommodations for Ir vine [“I kept it really shor t for his relief”] because “oh my god God was he ner vous.” Two men getting hot and heavy — Ir vine just felt pressure to, you know, get it right. And with Stonewall too, of course. To prepare, Ir vine powered through a stack of books and also listened to producerconducted inter views. “I didn’t know a huge amount about [Stonewall] before I read the script and did all my research,” he admitted. “I was quite ashamed at how ignorant I was about the Stonewall Movement.” Now the public will see the end-result, the culmination of a passionate director and his equally-as-passionate cast — and not for two minutes; for two hours. Emmerich expects more scrutiny, but shrugs it off.




“I don’t know what they will say,” he said. “They will probably find other stuff to criticize. I always say a movie’s a movie and it is what it is. We all are really super proud of it.” Echoing the latter sentiment, Ir vine is pleased to be a part of “Stonewall,” a project that he believes will put nearly a half-centur y of gradual progress — from the riots to the Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality — into perspective. “I hope that the movie brings home how important that period of history was,” he said. “If we can bring that more to the forefront of people’s thoughts, then the film has done what it’s meant to do.” —Chris Azzopardi is the editor of Q Syndicate, the international LGBT wire service. Reach him via his website at and on Twitter, @chrisazzopardi.t


GAY SAN DIEGO Sept. 18 - Oct 1, 2015

Gay San Diego - September 18, 2015  
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