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    The Stud Collective Transforms Historic Queer Bar Into America’s First Co-Op Nightclub

    The Stud’s new chapter began eight years ago when it was announced, on August 4, 2016, that a group consisting of drag queens, DJs, and performers formed a co-op and secured funding to purchase the historic queer bar. It will soon be transformed into the country’s first co-op nightclub.

    “I’ve made the choice to move forward with transferring ownership of the bar to The Stud Collective based on the diverse, multitalented, qualified group that they represent. If these awesome folks can’t make it work, no one can,” said the former Stud owner Michael McElhaney, who sold the Stud after 25 years.


    The Stud Collective formed quickly after news that the 50-year-old Legacy business was in danger of shuttering due to rent hikes.

    “The real-estate market shows no signs of slowing down. If historic businesses are going to survive, our community will have to innovate,” co-op spokesperson and popular drag queen VivvyAnne Forevermore said at the time. “And that’s exactly what we’re going to do.”

    Working with then Supervisor Jane Kim, and the Mayor’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development, along with the support of then Supervisor David Campos, the co-op created a business model that has taken them to the present planned grand reopening on April 20, 2024.

    The following Stud Collective members were announced back in 2016:

    • Jerry Lee Abram: Production and Technical;
    • Nate Allbee: Government Relations and Operations;
    • Siobhan Aluvalot: Performance and Operations;
    • Marke Bieschke: Communication and Promotion;
    • John Foster/F. Cartwright: Promotion & Nonprofit Arts;
    • Paul Dillinger: Business and Finance;
    • Houston Gilbert: Business and Finance;
    • Terra Haywood: Operations and Art Direction;
    • Kelly Lovemonster: Marketing and Promotion;
    • Dottie Lux: Promotion and Performance;
    • Meg Murray/Profundity: Production Design and Business Strategy;
    • Alpha Mulugeta/Honey Mahogany: Promotion and Performance;
    • Mark O’Brien: Promotion and Performance;
    • Rachel Ryan/Little Gem: Promotion and Performance;
    • Neven Raja Samara: Design and Art Direction;
    • David Schnur: Development and Construction;
    • Mica Sigourney/VivvyAnne ForeverMORE!: Promotion and Performance.

    Forevermore at the time of the co-op’s purchase of The Stud said, “We have the funding, resources, and talent to make The Stud a profitable, successful business.” Soon that will come to the test, but given the dedication and varied talents of the collective, the Stud appears to be poised for countless more years of being, as Forevermore added, “a space where everyone is welcome.”

    The Epic Comeback of San Francisco’s Oldest Queer Bar
    Published on April 4, 2024