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    Divas & Drinks @ The Academy, March 24, 2023: Celebrating Women’s History Month & the SF Gay Softball League

    Spirits were high in spite of chilly temperatures on Friday evening, March 24, at The Academy SF during the Divas & Drinks event celebrating Women’s History Month and the 50th Anniversary of the SF Gay Softball League (SFGSL), the beneficiary of the fundraiser. Attendees enjoyed women’s history themed drink specials, including the “Who Runs the World?” cocktail.

    A presentation of vintage women’s softball team uniforms and caps along with a display of photos depicting teams from Maud’s, Amelia’s, and the Elbo Room was led by Michelle Jester, whose partner Mary Sager supported the work of her former partner Rikki Streicher and Gay Games co-founder Sarah Lowenstein in establishing the Women’s Division of the SFGSL during the 1970s.

    Emcee Donna Sachet delighted the crowd by dropping her designer red overcoat to reveal a vintage women’s softball team uniform complete with a ball and glove. Former SFPD officer Lenny Broberg, an SFGSL veteran, made a special appearance to assist Sachet in the auctioning of a basketball autographed by Golden State Warriors’ star Jordan Poole. Watch videos of those moments here:

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    SF Women’s March founder Sophia Andary, a member of the San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women, was introduced by the Commission’s President, Dr. Shokooh Miry. Both spoke with eloquence and passion about the Commission’s mission and the importance of remembering the historic achievements of women in leadership roles, including the Women’s Division of the SFGSL.

    Softball League Commissioner Vincent Fuqua spoke on behalf of the SFGSL and thanked current and former softball team members, captains, umpires, and board members for their support during his thirty-year tenure as Commissioner.

    Volunteer coordinators Juan Davila and Orlando Diaz organized a raffle benefiting the SFGSL. Sachet and DJ Christie James, presented by Olivia Travel, led the Name That Tune contest that featured Team Another Planet Entertainment with Captain Mary Conde and Team SFGSL with Captain Orlando Diaz.

    The evening also included a surprise birthday celebration for San Francisco Bay Times columnist and beloved community advocate Joanie Juster, who addressed guests after being presented with a big bouquet and cake. She attended the event with LGBTQ+ activist Troy Brunet, former president of Lions Clubs International.

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    Thanks to sponsors Olivia Travel, Extreme Pizza, Bacardí, Golden State Warriors, and San Francisco Federal Credit Union.

    The next Divas & Drinks @ The Academy, on Friday, April 28, will be a benefit for Frameline and is being organized with the help of Frameline’s Nguyen Pham, who is also the President of SF Pride. The event will take place during the birthday week for legendary drag performer, fundraiser, and Bay Times columnist Donna Sachet and for “Betty’s List” founder and San Francisco Bay Times co-publisher Dr. Betty Sullivan. They will both be milestone birthdays! It promises to be a very special evening with many surprise guests. We hope to see you there! For more information and to register:

    Published on April 6, 2023