They're going on a duck boat tour, and playing bingo, of course. They're touring the Old Mint Building, just because it's pretty. Sign language interpretation is provided at most events. There's even a "Meet-n-Greet Mixer." Little else happening during the International Bear Rendezvous could be repeated in front of religious fundamentalists, making it all the funnier that the large, hairy, and proud-of-it bear community occasionally acts like a bunch of little old ladies visiting the city. As some of the only people in the U.S. (elsewhere, too) who simply adore themselves for being so large and hairy, bears are role models for us all. So, straights, when you see gaggles of big leather dudes ogling each other while shopping for hankies this weekend, smile. If you're a big leather dude, smile even more; it's your week to piss off religious fundamentalists in the way that only you can. As the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence are wont to say, "Go forth and sin some more."
Feb. 11-15, 2010