SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – The San Francisco Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Community Center has come to the rescue, reaching an agreement to put on the popular Pride weekend event Pink Saturday, that was in danger of being canceled this year.
It had been in question whether Pink Saturday would occur in 2015, after the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence said they would not organize it this year. They had produced Pink Saturday since 1995.READ MORE: San Francisco Transit Officials Reopen Muni Metro Stations; Restore F-Line Trolley Service To Fisherman's Wharf
But growing safety and security concerns were part of the reason the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence decided to step away. “Pink Saturday has been increasingly difficult to produce in recent years,” Sister Selma Soul said in a statement. “An escalation in violence associated with the event convinced us last summer that the event needed to significantly change if we were to produce it again.”
On Thursday, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and Supervisor Scott Wiener announced that the SF LGBT Center has stepped forward to put on the event, with funding assistance from the City.
“The Center is honored to continue the Pink Saturday traditions established by the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence – traditions that bring our diverse community together in a celebration of LGBT culture and Pride” said SF LGBT Center Executive Director Rebecca Rolfe in a statement. “For many people, particularly many young people, this party is an affordable, accessible opportunity to honor the importance of being our authentic selves and to connect with LGBT people of all ages, cultures, and backgrounds. We appreciate the support provided by Supervisor Wiener and Mayor Lee. With their investment, and community feedback from previous events, we are able to build upon the legacy established by the Sisters while improving safety and creating a stronger LGBT cultural experience. We believe deeply in the power of community, and working with our LGBT and allied partners, look forward to a safe and celebratory experience for everyone.”
Pink Saturday takes place every year on Castro Street the evening before the San Francisco Pride Parade.
“I can’t thank the SF LGBT Center and the Mayor’s Office enough for stepping up to make sure Pink Saturday continues this year,” Supervisor Wiener said in a statement. “This is such an important event for our community, and I look forward to working closely with the Center to bring everyone together for this great celebration and to make sure it’s a safe event that celebrates Pride. I also want to recognize all the years of amazing work that the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence have done in the past to bring us Pink Saturday year after year. The SF LGBT Center has big shoes to fill, but I’m confident that we can all work together to make this year’s Pink Saturday a success.”MORE NEWS: Newsom Budget Targets Cleaning Up California; 'The State’s Too Damn Dirty'
Due to public safety concerns, the SF LGBT Center will be increasing security for this year’s event with help from the City, and it also expected to end earlier than in previous years, possibly closer to 8:00 p.m.