This weekend’s Oaklash drag festival will only involve online drags, but The Oasis, Red Victorian, and even the Castro’s sidewalks are now hosting regular in-person drag events — but no cheaters allowed on masks and distancing.
The East Bay-based drag festival Oaklash will not be wigged out by the COVID-19 shelter-in-place unpleasantness, and will start its third annual iteration as a Twitch stream in just a few hours of Friday night. The 7 p.m. Friday evening show brings an all-star lineup featuring Peaches Christ and Yvie Oddly from Season 11 of Drag Race, Saturday has an all-day litany of drag panels followed by VivvyAnne ForeverMore’s "Drag Alive!" with Honey Mahogany at 7 p.m. and a late-night afterparty, and Sunday is similarly stacked with panels all day and the big Main Event at 5 p,m., coming live from both The Oasis in SF and 7th West in Oakland (and also officially kicking off Oakland Pride).
Great interview in @48hills with Mama Celeste about this weekend's giant online Oaklash 2020! I'm performing tonight in the Digital Drag section hosted by @BiqtchPu— Peaches Christ (@PeachesChrist) September 4, 2020
& @NickiJizz. Tune in!https://t.co/XxjkP1J2jE
But on the heels of that weekend party, today’s Chronicle brings us the news that socially distant, in-person drag shows are coming out to The Oasis, the Red Victorian Hotel on Haight Street, and the sidewalks of the Castro. Some of these gender-bending shenanigans are making national news.
The socially distant drag show, which started the first weekend of August, is organized by Adam Rice and drag performer Bussy Dad. The plan is to host Fishbowl Drag every Saturday until the end of September. https://t.co/3x1PwEAbB6— San Francisco Chronicle (@sfchronicle) September 4, 2020
The Chron’s story mostly focuses on Fishbowl Drag, an 8 p.m. Saturday night weekly show on the sidewalk in front of the Red Victorian, wherein performers go at it peep-show style behind the venue’s picture windows. Organizers say “The plan is to host Fishbowl Drag every Saturday until the end of September.” More tantalizingly, the Chronicle also adds that “The group that produces Fishbowl is negotiating a new lease with the property owner to turn the space into a housing project for transgender people and people of color,” and a GoFundMe effort is underway to help realize that dream.
But the Fishbowl show itself has been drawing crowds of as many as 50, all masked and properly distanced. “The fact that it’s happening in the street is the kind of punk rock community experience San Francisco is built on,” next door Zam Zam bartender Mickey Healy told the Chronicle.
Meanwhile, Castro Street glitter booty shorts purveyor Knobs also hosted a couple of Sunday sidewalk shows in August, on a small parklet stage. There are no upcoming shows detailed on the Knobs Facebook page, but the recent Hoodline news of car-free Sundays in the Castro could beget more such drag chicanery.
we’re making national news with our drag delivery service! https://t.co/njDWeZomR4— OASIS (@sfoasis) August 31, 2020
And even the Washington Post has taken notice of The Oasis’ new Meals on Heels deal, now expanded to Thursday night as well as Fridays. That gets you a hot delivery of chow "that includes a curbside lip-synch" according to new Oasis owner D'Arcy Drollinger. The Oasis has recently switched to rooftop dining with drag shows on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, and while this Sunday will not be an option since they’re putting on an Oaklash show, The Oasis’ website tells us “starting 9/24, we’ll add Thursdays 5-9pm!” Of course, we’re still shitting ourselves excitedly that Drollinger will world-premiere her feature film Shit & Champagne at the West Wind Solano Drive-In in Concord on September 17.
Image: SF Oasis via Facebook