Woody’s Fun

Getting my groove on with the girlfriend at the iconic Philadelphia gay bar Woody’s. Super fun place in the Gayborhood described by Wikipedia below.

Washington Square West, sometimes called Midtown Village, is referred to by locals as “the Gayborhood.”[1] Since the 1920s this area was a mecca for fashion and entertainment. During the 1960s a transition from high-end stage performances and chorus lines into cheap adult entertainment took place. “Musical bars” on Camac and Quince Streets hosted gay and lesbian clientele but required a fee to mob connections for law enforcement to look the other way. The preservation of these bars around 13th and Locust Streets, through dealings with the mob, made gay culture appear more closely tied to illegal activity, which drew attention from the authorities.[2] The lumping together of prostitutes, drug dealers, and homosexuals provoked police raids on gay bars up into the early 1980s. During this time, demonstrations at Independence Hall for gay rights sought to raise the community from an underground and lascivious group into a more unified community and political entity.[2] This same area of the city remains an epicenter for gay culture today.[4]

This Washington Square West district was selected to undergo gentrification in the mid-1970s and up to one-fifth of the old structures were razed.[2] Shortly after the project began, federal assistance was discontinued and the district’s demolished lots sat unoccupied during a long recovery period into the 1990s. Mayor Ed Rendell promoted a new era of gentrification which helped Washington Square West regain its footing and transform into a healthy, economically viable community by the early 2000s.[2]

In 2007, 36 rainbow street signs were mounted throughout intersections within 11th and Broad Streets, formally recognizing the Gayborhood as part of Philadelphia culture.[2]

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