Opened in 1979, the Rawhide is one of the last of a handful of old-school, unpretentious gay bars left in New York City. It is a survivor. But it won't be for long. The building that houses it on 8th and 21st in Chelsea was sold a couple of years ago and the new landlord has jacked up the rent, nearly doubling it from $15,000 to $27,000 a month. The Rawhide has officially been evicted. Their last day will be March 31.
Mayoral front-runner Christine Quinn just had this to say about the Rawhide to New York magazine in January:
“One of the things I loved about Chelsea is that on Eighth Avenue, there is the Rawhide bar--not a luxury product. And for many years there were Latino guys from the neighborhood who had a folding card table every Friday and Saturday night and played dominoes. And they knew every guy who walked into the Rawhide, and every guy that walked in the Rawhide knew them. A leather bar may or may not be the best example, but it is the type of neighborhood experience we want to be able to have, what Jane Jacobs called ‘the eyes on the streets’ all watching out for each other.”