San Francisco's iconic gay bar, Twin Peaks Tavern, has long been an unofficial LGBT landmark. But come next month, it could ditch the unofficial part.
The Historic Preservation Committee first recommended the self-proclaimed "gay Cheers bar" for official LGBT landmark status back in September, and District Supervisor Scott Wiener presented the ordinance to the Board of Supervisors earlier this month.
Now, the Board will vote on the recommendation on December 10. A passing vote would make the bar only the third official LGBT landmark in San Francisco, alongside the Names Project building (the original home of the AIDS Memorial Quilt) and the Harvey Milk camera shop.
The recommendation is based both on its community and historical LGBT significance. In 1972, Twin Peaks Tavern became the first gay bar in the nation to feature transparent, floor-to-ceiling windows, revealing the patrons inside--a risky and revolutionary decision at the time.
"That move represented the coming out of our community into the light instead of hiding in the shadows," Wiener told The Huffington Post. "Twin Peaks Tavern has enormous historical significance for the LGBT community."
"A lot of bars, not just in San Francisco but elsewhere, it was just a nondescript door and you would go in the back and downstairs," Wiener told the Examiner. "People were fearful of police raids."
As landmark status can make architectural changes to a building nothing short of a migraine, the Commission initially feared the honor might not be welcomed with open arms.
"But we met with the bar owners and the property owners and both are supportive," explained Historic Preservation Committee Acting Preservation Coordinator Tim Frye. to HuffPost "Now the Board will vote to make it official."
Twin Peaks Tavern, you've already got a vote from us.
Main photo courtesy Flickr: torbakhopper.