ASK BACCHUS: What's Pink Saturday?

Saturday, June 25th, we're hosting a Pink Saturday Party!
Why? Because the last Saturday in June is an historically important day for gay pride (see below).

Every Saturday, we open at 9AM- and this Saturday, you can start the party with one of Tuki's famous Pinky shots, just $6 then keep the party going all day.

The Aloha Bears' chartered bus for SPLASH at Wet & Wild leaves from Bacchus at 10AM and heads back to Bacchus at 4PM.  Get your bus tickets at thealohabears.com. For more infomation about SPLASH, visit: The Hawaii Legacy Foundation.

At the park and at 408 Lewers, we'll be thinking pink all day. We will be decked out in pink and we will be giving away pink bandanas to our customers (while supplies last). And, if you would like to make a donation for the bandana we give you, please know that we will be donating all proceeds to FOYO, the friends of youth outreach. Check out their website here.

This Saturday, be proud, be wet, be wild and wear pink! We encourage you to wear as much or as little pink as you'd like. For inspiration, take a look at these hotties. (click to enlarge)

ABOUT THE LAST SATURDAY IN JUNE
The Stonewall Inn, located at 51 and 53 Christopher Street, along with several other establishments in the city, was owned by the Genovese family. In 1966, three members of the Mafia invested $3,500 to turn the Stonewall Inn into a gay bar, after it had been a restaurant and a nightclub for heterosexuals. Once a week a police officer would collect envelopes of cash as a payoff; the Stonewall Inn had no liquor license. It had no running water behind the bar—used glasses were run through tubs of water and immediately reused. There were no fire exits, and the toilets overran consistently. Though the bar was not used for prostitution, drug sales and other "cash transactions" took place. It was the only bar for gay men in New York City where dancing was allowed; dancing was its main draw since its re-opening as a gay club.

Visitors to the Stonewall Inn in 1969 were greeted by a bouncer who inspected them through a peephole in the door. The legal drinking age was 18, and to avoid unwittingly letting in undercover police (who were called "Lily Law", "Alice Blue Gown", or "Betty Badge"), visitors would have to be known by the doorman, or look gay. The entrance fee on weekends was $3, for which the customer received two tickets that could be exchanged for two drinks. Patrons were required to sign their names in a book to prove that the bar was a private "bottle club", but rarely signed their real names. There were two dance floors in the Stonewall; the interior was painted black, making it very dark inside, with pulsing gel lights or black lights. If police were spotted, regular white lights were turned on, signaling that everyone should stop dancing or touching. In the rear of the bar was a smaller room frequented by "queens"; it was one of two bars where effeminate men who wore makeup and teased their hair (though dressed in men's clothing) could go. Only a few transvestites, or men in full drag, were allowed in by the bouncers. The customers were "98 percent male" but a few lesbians sometimes came to the bar. Younger homeless adolescent males, who slept in nearby Christopher Park, would often try to get in so customers would buy them drinks. The age of the clientele ranged between the upper teens and early thirties, and the racial mix was evenly distributed among white, black, and Hispanic patrons. Because of its even mix of people, its location, and the attraction of dancing, the Stonewall Inn was known by many as "the gay bar in the city".

Police raids on gay bars were frequent—occurring on average once a month for each bar. Many bars kept extra liquor in a secret panel behind the bar, or in a car down the block, to facilitate resuming business as quickly as possible if alcohol was seized. Bar management usually knew about raids beforehand due to police tip-offs, and raids occurred early enough in the evening that business could commence after the police had finished. During a typical raid, the lights were turned on, and customers were lined up and their identification cards checked. Those without identification or dressed in full drag were arrested; others were allowed to leave. Some of the men, including those in drag, used their draft cards as identification. Women were required to wear three pieces of feminine clothing, and would be arrested if found not wearing them. Employees and management of the bars were also typically arrested. The period immediately before June 28, 1969, was marked by frequent raids of local bars—including a raid at the Stonewall Inn on the Tuesday before the riots—and the closing of the Checkerboard, the Tele-Star, and two other clubs in Greenwich Village.

At 1:20 a.m. on Saturday, June 28, 1969, four plainclothes policemen in dark suits, two patrol officers in uniform, and Detective Charles Smythe and Deputy Inspector Seymour Pine arrived at the Stonewall Inn's double doors and announced "Police! We're taking the place!"

It was the evening after Judy Garland's funeral. Approximately 205 people were in the bar that night. Patrons who had never experienced a police raid were confused. A few who realized what was happening began to run for doors and windows in the bathrooms, but police barred the doors.

The raid did not go as planned. Standard procedure was to line up the patrons, check their identification, and have female police officers take customers dressed as women to the bathroom to verify their sex, upon which any men dressed as women would be arrested. Those dressed as women that night refused to go with the officers. Men in line began to refuse to produce their identification. The police decided to take everyone present to the police station, after separating those cross-dressing in a room in the back of the bar.


Twenty-eight cases of beer and nineteen bottles of hard liquor were seized, but the patrol wagons had not yet arrived, so patrons were required to wait in line for about 15 minutes. Those who were not arrested were released from the front door, but they did not leave quickly as usual. Instead, they stopped outside and a crowd began to grow and watch. Within minutes, between 100 and 150 people had congregated outside, some after they were released from inside the Stonewall, and some after noticing the police cars and the crowd.

When the first patrol wagon arrived, the crowd—most of whom were homosexual—had grown to at least ten times the number of people who were arrested, and they all became very quiet. A bystander shouted, "Gay power!", someone began singing "We Shall Overcome", and the crowd reacted with amusement and general good humor mixed with "growing and intensive hostility". An officer shoved a transvestite, who responded by hitting him on the head with her purse as the crowd began to boo. Pennies, then beer bottles, were thrown at the wagon as a rumor spread through the crowd that patrons still inside the bar were being beaten.

The riot soon began. Garbage cans, garbage, bottles, rocks, and bricks were hurled at the building, breaking the windows. Witnesses attest that "flame queens", hustlers, and gay "street kids"—the most outcast people in the gay community—were responsible for the first volley of projectiles, as well as the uprooting of a parking meter used as a battering ram on the doors of the Stonewall Inn.

The Tactical Police Force (TPF) of the New York City Police Department arrived to free the police trapped inside the Stonewall. One officer's eye was cut, and a few others were bruised from being struck by flying debris. The cops were totally humiliated and they were angry. With larger numbers, police detained anyone they could and put them in patrol wagons to go to jail. Fights erupted with the transvestites, who wouldn't go into the patrol wagon.

The TPF formed a phalanx and attempted to clear the streets by marching slowly and pushing the crowd back. The mob openly mocked the police. The crowd cheered, started impromptu kick lines, and sang to the tune of Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay.

By 4:00 in the morning, Saturday, June 28th, the streets had nearly been cleared. Many people sat on stoops or gathered nearby in Christopher Park throughout the morning, dazed in disbelief at what had transpired. A second night of rioting followed.
A few weeks later, the Stonewall Inn was put up for rent. (It's open today in the same spot with different ownership.) The police raids on gay clubs would continue into 1970. So much rage. So much heartbreak. The Stonewall riots marked such a significant turning point that many aspects of prior gay and lesbian culture, such as bar culture formed from decades of shame and secrecy, were forcefully ignored and denied.

The following year, to mark the anniversary of the riots, the Christopher Street Liberation Day Parade was held in New York City. It's the first ever Gay Pride celebration in the world. Today, we celebrate Pink Saturday as a nod to ALL the brave men and women from the Stonewall Inn and beyond...those who paved the way for the gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgendered, intersex and questioning people of the world.