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    Prince’s Musical Director to Blast Out Purple Love at 43rd Annual Castro Street Fair

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    It is hard to believe that the Castro Street Fair is 43 years old! Members of our team have been going for many of those years, and will be back again this year with our San Francisco Bay Times-“Betty’s List” booth. Please look for us and be sure to stop by. Fairgoers are asked to donate just $5–10 at the gates, so the event really is one of the best deals around.

    The music is always a highlight, and this year’s offers one of the best lineups in the Fair’s impressive history. The Main Stage will be home to performances from Above and Beyond the Valley of the Ultra Showgirls, Bitch Please, Simone Gemini, and special guests The Purple Ones.

    Not a typical tribute band with a Prince lookalike or impersonator, The Purple Ones bring audiences to their feet, night after night, by speaking Prince’s musical language: a mix of energy, rhythm, creativity and, of course, a serious dose of unadulterated funk. The Purple Ones is a labor of love that was born in 2012 when Bay Area-based founder Morty Okin decided build the greatest Prince tribute on the planet. The Purple Ones is proud to feature Levi Seacer, Jr., Prince’s former musical director and co-founder of the “New Power Generation.” The Purple Ones tap into the soulful artistry of Prince like none other.

    The Fair features four entertainment areas: the aforementioned Main Stage (on Market at Castro Street), Dance Alley (in the parking lot behind Walgreen’s, off of 18th street), Sundance Saloon (in the parking lot behind the Castro Theatre), and the Castro Street Stage (on Castro between 18th and 19th).

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    The Castro Street Stage is new in 2016, as the stage used to be the “18th Street Stage” and was previously placed on 18th Street between Collingwood and Diamond. It will showcase live performances from The Monster Show, Vollmer, Beautiful Machines, and Markus. Dance Alley will feature the DJ talents of RoseGold, Juan, Adam Kraft, and Jim Hopkins. Sundance Saloon is the place to go to line dance to your favorite C/W tunes. In 2016, the Sundance area will return to where it has been for many years, behind the Castro Theatre.

    The Fair partners with over twenty local nonprofit organizations, and the funds raised at the gates are donated back at the end of the year. In 2015, the Castro Street Fair donated over $45,000 to local beneficiary partner organizations. In addition, proceeds from the gate donations help to fund the purchase of the rainbow flag that flies proudly over Harvey Milk Plaza in the Castro.

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    You can eat and drink your way down the streets of the Fair, which seems to always happen on one of the hottest days of the year, so do not forget your sunscreen. Fairgoers over 21 can purchase beer and other drinks at five beverage booths throughout the fairgrounds. Your donation at the gates gets a fairgoer a sticker, and a discount on the beverages purchased at the Fair’s beverage booths.

    You can also shop your way down the streets, as over 150 exhibitors will be lining them. Many of the vendors offer one-of-a-kind and/or locally produced art, products, and clothing.

    The sponsors of the 2016 Castro Street Fair include Chevron, Miller Lite, Recology, Curran Theatre, and Bed Bath & Beyond. Support for the Fair comes from Via Media, Clubcard, and Grants for the Arts. Speaking of our friends at Via Media, be sure to pick up a Castro Street Fair program, if you have not already done so, to find out more information about this year’s Fair. You can also visit the newly designed website: