Davie St will show off its furrier side when the Village plays host to a Wild Weekend of bear-focused fun, Oct 20 to 23.
Organizer Todd Brisbin, a self-professed “gay bear drag queen,” hopes the weekend will stir a greater appreciation for bears in Vancouver’s gay community.
“It’s a bear weekend, but it’s about more than that,” says Brisbin, encouraging the not-so-furry to attend as well.
“The Vancouver queer community is a very separated community,” he says. “We need to come together. The absolute most important thing to me is that we blur the lines for those that think we should separate the community.”
Spending time in San Francisco reinforced Brisbin’s belief in the need to foster a more inclusive and accepting gay community here.
“Who cares if I’m a bear?” he asks. “I’m furry and a little overweight. In San Francisco, it doesn’t matter what you look like. It’s all about if you’re a good and happy person. People are accepting,” he maintains.
Vancouver regularly hosts leather, rubber and other party weekends, but this is the first bear weekend in recent memory.
More than a dozen events are planned for the three days in venues in and around the Davie Village. Celebrities, the PumpJack Pub, the Fountainhead, Oasis, Little Sister’s and Moxie’s have all agreed to donate money, time and space to the events. Proceeds from the weekend will go to Camp Moomba, a BC summer camp for youth affected by HIV/AIDS.
Asked what he hopes to raise for the charity, Brisbin goes silent. “I have no idea,” he finally says. “I’m not sure what to expect. At this point in time I’m just blown away with the number of people involved. It’s been amazing. I really did not expect the support that I’m getting,” he adds.