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Folsom Street Fair
A Quick Guide

Every year, 450,000 leather and kink enthusiasts flock to San Francisco for the largest and most famous leather event in the United States.  If you've never been before, or are planning on attending this year, here is a brief guide to the granddaddy of all leather events.

Date
Folsom Street Fair is always the last Sunday in September.  Folsom Street Fair marks the end of Leather Week.

In 2008, the the Folsom Street Fair will be held on September 28th.

For more information about leather and kink events in San Francisco, visit the San Francisco Leather Calendar.

Location
 
The Folsom Street Fair is held on Folsom Street between 7th and 12th Streets.  During the fair, traffic is very heavy and parking extremely limited.  Folsom Street Fair is a five minute walk from the Civic Center MUNI Station.
Important Information for visitors to San Francisco
Make hotel and travel reservations well in advance!  Over 300,000 people come to San Francisco for Folsom Street Fair - making it one of the largest public events in California.  The gay-friendly and centrally located hotels sell out months in advance.  Even less desirable hotels will also sell out before the event.  Make sure you plan your trip long before the fair!  See our list of leather-friendly accommodations here.
 

San Francisco is generally more drug friendly than other cities, and there is a good amount of drug use in the queer community.  Visit DanceSafe.org for more information on recreational drugs and their effects.
 

The Folsom Street Fair is run by volunteers and raises huge amounts of money for worthy non-profits.  On your way into the fair, you'll be asked for a donation.  Please be kind and remember your money supports the community. 

Leather Week
Leather Week is a seven-day celebration of all things leather and kink!  Each year, the week before Folsom Street Fair is filled with motorcycle rides, the Leather Walk, special events, sex parties and other fun activities.  For more information on Leather Week events, visit the San Francisco Leather Calendar.
Places to Stay & Airport Information
 
The Best Western Motor Inn and Ramada Inn Civic Center are the closest hotels to the Fair and are preferred by experienced visitors.  You'll be sure to be in good company if you can get reservations there.  Other queer-friendly accommodations are listed on our leather places page.

If you are making hotel reservations, hotels located near South of Market, Union Square, Downtown, and Castro are the best bets for being near the fair and easy access to MUNI (public transportation).  Avoid staying at hotels near the airport (it's 10 miles from the city and hard to get to on public transport), in the Tenderloin/Civic Center, or on the north side of the city. 

It's best to fly into San Francisco International Airport.  Oakland International Airport is a good second choice. San Jose International Airport isis 40 miles and an hour away by car.

Unless you want to spend your entire trip searching for parking, forget renting a car.  Take a cab, bus or shuttle to the city.  Once you are in San Francisco, getting around is easy via MUNI or by taxi.  Buy a MUNI map at any MUNI station or from your hotel concierge.  It's also easy to get around the city by foot - it's a very compact city.

We highly recommend you consider staying until Monday after the fair.  Traffic around the fair makes getting transportation to the airport very difficult.  The crowd stays out late into the night on the day of the fair, so enjoy another day in San Francisco.

Weather
San Francisco in September generally has warm days and cool nights.  During the day, it can be between 80-95 degrees (F), and much cooler at night.  In rare years, it has rained during Folsom Street Fair.  You can check weather forecasts here.
Additional Resources
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