Another highlight of my trip to the prairies this last month involved a trip to the only gay bar Regina has to offer (that I’ve heard of). Being from out of town, I automatically assumed that the bar was named to match the sign that hung out front. A large neon rainbow flag, aka. The Rainbow, marked with the street address on Broad Street.
After discussions with the locals, I have now learned that this club has affectionately earned the name, “The Gay Bar”. My bad. I still think calling it The Rainbow is better, so I’m going to do so.
My trip to this gay bar was definitely a skeptical one. For years my friends have prevented me from going as there really never was a reason to go (let’s be honest, I was having enough fun at the country bars). For the first time while back in Regina, I had a reason, lesbians! I had met a group of girls that play baseball with my friend Steph and they overheard our conversation of me wanting to check the place out. Naturally, with my wicked-awesome persuasive skills, I convince Steph and a few friends to skip on down to The Rainbow.
My mind was racing as I truly didn’t know what to expect. To my surprise and happiness, the club turned out to be pretty awesome! There was a split level with the bathrooms on the lower level with the upper level being reserved for the dance floor (which had it’s own room) the lounge and bar, and the outside patio. There was a collection of all people there; gay, lesbian, transgender and cowboys!
The DJ was sick, spinning mega-top 40 with some classic hip hop beats. Honestly, I could have danced there all night long. What made the night though was seeing the variety of people intermingling. Skinny twinks were chatting with John-Goodman-style lesbians, and everyone seemed to be happy and having a good time. Then it hit me. This is what the gay community is supposed to be like. Although Regina is somewhat forced due to the limited number of gay bars (as far as I know, there is only the one), the hierarchy of the gay castes was completed removed!
After further research from a few conversations I had with fellow prairians (totally not a word, but I’m going to use it anyway) once back in Vancouver, I discovered that the gay club in Regina is owned by the community, with an elected board of governors that run the place and all of its events. This concept astounded me; it’s the perfect prairie co-op initiative. I love this business model, as the happenings of the club were truly the voice of the community at large and what they wanted the space to be.
Seriously, the next time WestJet has a sale, grab a cheap flight to the Queen City (again, legitimately Regina’s name) and give the community a little boost.