40th Anniversary Castro Street Fair Extra Special With Lineup inc. David Harness, Pete Avila, Cookie Dough + The Monster Show

Posted by Billyjam, October 5, 2013 11:32am | Post a Comment
Every year on the first Sunday in October in the Castro District of San Francisco both residents of and visitors to the pioneering LGBT friendly SF neighborhood have good reason to celebrate since that is when the annual Castro Street Fair takes place. But this year's event - happening tomorrow Sunday, October 6th, from 11am to 6pm - is gonna be extra special since it is the 40th anniversary of the pride themed festival that was founded founded by the late great Harvey Milk back in 1974 when he envisioned "a neighborhood fair" with an emphasis on the community and the inhabitants of that (Castro) community. In the four decades since its inception the Castro Street Fair has steadily evolved and grown just as gay rights have (slowly but steadily) evolved across this nation with San Francisco's Castro District being a symbol for many in the national movement for equality for all.

To celebrate this landmark year there are some great performers scheduled between the different entertainment areas including the Main Stage where headliner Peaches will be at 4pm, and The Monster Show with Cookie Dough & DJ MC2 who will be onstage at both 12:30pm and 2pm when they'll do two Wizard Of Oz themed performances with ensemble members including Sue Casa as The Scarescrow, Bebe Sweetbriar as The Good Witch, Crafty Dough as Toto, and Adam Brown as The Gatekeeper. Meanwhile on the Fair's  Legends Stage  turntable masters will include David Harness at 3pm and Pete Avila who will be spinning the final set at 5pm - each DJ spins for one hour. (for full performers line-up and times at all areas click here under "Entertainment"). This week I caught up with David Harness, Pete Avila, and Cookie Dough to ask them each three questions about this year's Castro Street Fair and its meaning to them.

Amoeblog: What does the Castro Fair represent to you and/or others?

Cookie Dough: It was started by Harvey Milk as the Castro area was becoming a more visibly gay neighborhood. Today I feel it represents Unity among all people, The LGBT Community, and their supporters. People love to come out and enjoy a day of entertainment in what is still known as the Gay epicenter of the World.

Pete Avila:
Castro Street Fair is simply a celebration of life: doesn't matter if you are straight, gay, black/white, liberal/conservative. People travel far and wide to represent and celebrate our diversity and self awareness [and] to be who we want to be without any fear of judgement!

David Harness:
To me Castro Street Fair has always meant a neighborhood gathering where locals show off various passions in arts, crafts, information on various causes and health issues for the gay community. It also feels like a place where the Castro community comes together to have a party to show Pride in the Castro.

What makes this year special for the Castro Street Fair in your opinion?

Cookie Dough: That it is turning 40 years old which is a great milestone for The City to have an ongoing annual street party, started from someone who was taken away by such a tragic incident.
The different stages and dance areas always bring together great local and out of town talent. Plus this year the Castro Street Fair is honoring Sylvester.

Pete Avila: Because this year commemorates Castro's 40 year anniversary - The Castro will be Red Ruby Anniversary, and the committee chair Juan Garcia is asking everyone to wear red as a sign of support and solidarity. I think it's going to be an amazing turnout and the Castro is gonna be a sea of red as far as the eye can see!

David Harness:
This is my first time ever going to the Castro Street Fair. I have lived in the area for more than twenty years so I am excited. Castro Street Fair is celebrating 40 years which is amazing in itself. I am thankful to have the opportunity to play.

Amoeblog: What can folks expect from your set on Sunday?

Cookie Dough: With the theme being ‘Red’ for its 40th Anniversary, we went with the iconic Wizard Of Oz idea and Dorothy’s Ruby Red Slippers. Using this idea for both sets, but still wanting to make sure each set is unique, we chose different songs but still carrying the message of being “Home”. I’ve also made sure to assemble some of our best performers, while co-creator, DJ MC2, mixed in sound bites to thread the storyline together.

Pete Avila: I'm super excited to be playing at the Fair and really looking forward to getting behind the decks and channeling some positive vibrations:  I intend to give the crowd what they want and take them on a journey they won't soon forget!

David Harness: Everyone's set is an hour so I am going to cram as much musical love I can in that set. For being called a legend is such an honor. I think I want to incorporate classic grooves from the days of Club Universe, T Dances from the End Up, as well as some grooves from the days of FAG Fridays, Lift, and when I was on Yo Mamas House (106 KMEL). That is a lot in an hour. Whew!!

Relevant Tags

The Monster Show (2), Dj Mc2 (3), Cookie Dough (4), Pete Avila (1), David Harness (2), Castro Street Fair (1)