Some 200 people gathered last night in support of saving the Eagle Tavern, which as we discussed yesterday is under threat of closure by month’s end because the landlord has found himself a better deal. Today we learn via Glendon Hyde (a.k.a. Anna Conda), who continues to rally Facebook support for the cause, that the owners of Skylark on 16th Street are the ones trying to buy the lease out from under The Eagle. Hyde led a march last night, from the Eagle into Skylark chanting, “Hell NO we won’t let the Eagle go!” And today, Hyde and others will hold a press conference along with Supervisors Scott Wiener and Jane Kim, and then take their case before the Board of Supervisors this afternoon.
“Although there is no evidence that this can or can’t be stopped, we have made great headway,” writes Hyde. “We have some political backing and lots of momentum and it is our belief that we can and will save the Eagle for future generations of Queers.” (Part of the controversy here being that the bar has been part of the gay community for 30 years, and is under threat of becoming a straight bar, though the new owners’/leaseholders’ plans remain unclear.)
SF Weekly’s All Shook Down blog further explains that the new owner of the property, described as a “thirtysomething resident of Santa Rosa” who inherited it from family, stepped in to stop the transfer of the lease last year to Eagle manager Ron Hennis and Lila Thirkield, owner of the Lexington Club. “He saw an opportunity to start his own business here,” says Thirkield, but despite being unwilling to lease the bar to them, he was allegedly willing to lease it to the owners of Skylark.
Yesterday, Supervisor Jane Kim told SFist, that the potential closure was “really unfortunate,” but she did not know what Supervisors could really do to stop the property owner from doing as he wishes.
Earlier: 30-Year-Old Eagle Tavern May Shutter as Property Owner Refuses a Sale to Bar Employees [Grub Street]