(credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Looking for a little bit of country in the Bay Area? If so, you’ve got it, and at many places too with the expanding country bars scene around the Bay. Enjoy country music, line dancing, a twang here and there and loads of friendly folks who just want to have fun. Grab that big old hat and follow the stampede to the best country bars, California style.

Sundance Saloon
550 Barneveld Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94114
(415) 820-1403
www.sundancesaloon.org

Come on down every Sunday and Thursday to experience LGBT country-western dancing at its best. Love to dance? Line up for dances you enjoy: two-step, line dance, swing, waltz or if you just want to hang out and schmooze, that’s fine too. Don’t feel badly if you can’t dance; the folks at Sundance Saloon will teach you with beginning lessons offered on Sunday and Thursday evenings. Admission is just $5. Some special events are a bit higher and admittance is for 21 and over. Check out the lessons calendar here.

The Saddle Rack
42011 Boscell Road
Fremont, CA 94538
(510) 979-0477
www.saddlerackfremont.com

The Saddle Rack is well known around the Bay Area for some of the best country talent around, and the partying and dancing vibe at its heart. The Saddle Rack’s hip country atmosphere comes with several levels of music for every party mood. There is a large stage for regular live concerts, seven well-stocked bars, a beer tub, a mechanical bull and more. If you want to learn how to dance, The Saddle Rack has a great dance lesson schedule, Wednesday through Friday evenings, for the dances you are looking for: East Coast swing, line dance, Mambo, plus a few other moves each week. Class goes hand-in-hand with The Saddle Rack in fun and safe party time for all. The club has a dress code to help you feel special. Visit the website to learn about upcoming events, dance lesson schedules, special events and that dress code.

Twang Honky Tonk & Country Jamboree
1237 Polk Street
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 776-1237
www.twanghonkytonk.com

Like country music? Like line dancing? Like meeting other folks who love southern hospitality in the center of San Francisco? If you want it all then sashay over to Twang Honky Tonk, “San Francisco’s House of Country Music,” where there is no cover, free line dancing lessons and country DJs spinning classic and contemporary country music favorites, including requests every hour. The drink prices are agreeable as well.

Twin Oaks Tavern
5745 Old Redwood Highway
Penngrove, CA 94951
(707) 795-5118
www.twinoakstavernpenngrove.com

Twin Oaks Tavern is a well-loved legendary spot that has its loyal fans, both long time and new. Although under new management, the place has stayed pretty much the same, and is a self-defined “Honky Tonk Juke Joint” that pledges to keep the Twin Oaks Tavern “what it has been for 100 years.” Live music highlights country jams, blues, jazz, retro-soul, lots of danceable sounds and much more. There is a full bar too, so the cocktails go right along with the burly beers. The menu offers a lunch of soups, salads, burgers and sandwiches served daily Monday through Saturday, plus BBQ with Rasta Dwight from Friday through Sunday nights, 6 to 9pm. Check the website for the monthly live music calendar.

Old Western Saloon
11201 State Route 1
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956
(415) 663-1661
www.facebook.com/old-western-saloon

Seemingly in the middle of nowhere rises Old Western Saloon, like a welcomed oasis for visitors to this bucolic town, but with its local fan base too. One fan says this is “truly … a real historic western saloon,” so there you go. It was first opened in the late 1890s, and it looks it, with not much remodeling since then. The joint’s funkiness and Old West spirit evidently keeps up with the times, as the Old Western Saloon is a popular, warm and welcoming spot for a beer or something stronger ordered at the big, old rustic bar. There is a jukebox with a ton of classic rock and a pool table, making it easy to mingle with the random folks who wander in after touring the little town or returning from a glorious hike. Enjoy live music hits on weekend nights on the stage in the middle, and there is a dance floor so everyone can have a good time.

Melanie Graysmith is a writer, artist and educator based in San Francisco. She writes on adult education, art and lifestyle topics, and enjoys writing short stories and poetry. She is also a member of an independent filmmaking group. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.


 

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