About the REAL Author
Darcy Kniefel was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska. She has been everything from a dishwasher in a remote lodge to a Cruise Director on the seven seas, she currently runs a restaurant for a local brewery and hosts a weekly pub quiz at a downtown ale house. Darcy was voted Best Fag Hag in the 2011 Trollop awards and was Baroness III of all Spenard. You can find her out and about town, usually with a good friend and smile on her face. Last week she had dinner with Neil Patrick Harris. Yes, THE Neil Patrick Harris.
Let me tell you, I was pretty blown away to be asked to write in the company of the other writers on this blog. It took me some time to ponder if I was the right fit. I really have no qualifications as a writer, so I am relying on my years of experience as a social butterfly (or fruit fly as some may call it) to entertain you. So check in every Friday for an insiders look at what to do and where to do it.
Just for the Gay of It…
The invitation to write about the fun events and social opportunities in Anchorage comes at an interesting time of year when everyone has had a long winter. A seriously stupid long winter. We all want our grass back, our sunshine, our late night golf and early morning lawn chair mimosas. I am so desperate for a patio party I wrapped myself in a blanket just to drink a beer outside the other day. Don’t judge me! I miss fresh air and I like beer. They go well together.
With that in mind, the big social event this weekend is Rent. Yup! Rent is in town and the tickets are selling faster than Kate Moss can spit out a tic tac before the calories hit. Now, I personally have never seen Rent. I know, what business do I have even writing the social scene if I don’t know the staples? It’s not the show I want to talk about, we all know the gist of it. What I want to tell you is what you’re doing before and after the show, and of course during intermission.
In order to get in the proper mood you need to be fed, but not too well fed. Nothing is worse than sitting through a great show where all you can think about is sneaking in to the bathroom to whip off your Spanx so you can breathe again after finishing the 12oz. steak at Ye Olde Bloated House.
Solution: Happy Hour!
Interesting fun fact: Anchorage liquor laws do not allow for Happy Hour drink specials. According to the law, bars and restaurants can not give special pricing on alcohol unless they run it for a seven-day period. Thus local owners have turned to other forms of joy.
Anchorage is aglow with Happy Hour specials on appetizers all over town. From mom and pop places to Simon and Seafort’s, if you go at the right time you can find the right price. My favorite for show nights is Sub Zero. It’s right across the street from the PAC so you can grab your apps, have a great cocktail, and enjoy the atmosphere which allows for good conversation. Now you are off to the show satisfied in the tummy and ready to feed your mind.
Once the lights go out you are in their hands, I know the show will be great and the costumes incredible. But about half way through something will happen. They just stop. Right in the middle. They take a break. Now if you have planned ahead you will have pre-ordered your intermission treats to be waiting for you in the lobby. A beer or a glass of wine, maybe a cookie, that’s all good and fine. But as a lover of ale I don’t like grabbing a beer and trying to slam it back while the house manager stands behind me and pressures me in to chugging it so I can get back to my seat in time.
I also like a bit of fresh air after sitting in the theater, somehow I always get a seat directly behind someone who has spilled an entire bottle of Fleur De LA Vieille on themselves. So I like to kill two birds with one stone. The break time is just enough time to journey outside and across the street back to Sub Zero. You won’t have time for a full cocktail, but let the bartender know you are in a hurry and you can get a nice shot before heading back. I like the cranberry kamis they have going over there. Fresh lime and vodka? Okay!
Back in your seat there’s more show and costumes with lots of applause, applause, applause. Now what? You’re already downtown – it’s time to hit up the gay bars. And you have to do it quick.This will be one of the last weekends to enjoy the gay trifecta of Anchorage.
For several years The Raven, Mad Myrna’s, and The Kodiak have made up a triangle of openly gay bars. With the recent sale of their liquor license to Olive Garden, The Kodiak will soon close down, turning our trifecta in to a duet. The space it resides in is reportedly being taken over by another bar already operating in downtown Anchorage, so we shall see what comes of it. Over the years each bar has carried it’s clientele with their own style. I could go in to the different types of people you will find in each bar, but let’s just leave that for you to explore.
If you’re really that curious download an app called Grindr. Park your car outside the bar and turn the Grindr app on. Voila! Your own little spy glass.
Speaking of cars and apps, while I am a lover of a good night out, I also want to make sure everyone gets home safe. Download an app called Cabulous. This ap will show where the cabs are in your area and can put in a call for you to be picked up right away. The app will tell you how far away your driver is, and when your cab has arrived. The best thing is, if you end up at a crazy house party you don’t have to know the address. It locates you and tells the cab driver.
I realize this wasn’t a far stretch in finding entertainment for the Pride minded in Anchorage. Going to Rent and hitting up the gay bars, I am pretty sure Captain Obvious stood by my side for this blog. But there is much more to come. As summer approaches there will be bake sales, strip shows, afternoons in the dog park, and some big crazy brunches.
Next Friday Kris Katkus will share insights on playing in Anchorage, and I will be back the following Friday. Whether it’s flaming Mai Tai’s or Neon bowling, I hope to bring you some fun ideas for entertainment, and maybe a few laughs along the way.
But just in case I missed something FABULOUS this weekend – use the comment field to tell me all about it.