Sonoma County's Gay Playground

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So yes, we've had a little issue with extra water recently...

Most likely you've seen the TV News coverage of our Russian River overflowing it's banks and the video is truely amazing. Lots and lots of muddy water. Almost everywhere.

What you don't notice is that downtown Guerneville didn't actually flood. All the businesses between Safeway and the River Grill (by the bridge) are fine. Actually during the highest water, you could still walk down Main Street and have a drink and get a burger.

Yes, some businesses did flood. Some worse than others. Cleanup is never easy and for a few businesses and residents it will take time to recover. However this is the price we all pay to live in paradise. And it IS paradise.

If you are planning a trip - come on over! We have great places to stay, eat, drink and shop that are open right now. The fantastic Armstrong Redwoods State Preserve is looking wonderful (Redwoods LOVE water), seals are having babies on the beach at Jenner-by-the-sea and whale watching season is full on.

We don't mean to minimize the damage and heartbreak for many of our businesses and friends, but frankly - we've done this before. We know the routine and the businesses that are closed will be reopening the the days and weeks to come. We expect most everyone to be open by sometime in May when the busy summer season starts.

If you want to support the businesses that received the most damage please donate at  What we would really like is for you to come, visit and bring your friends!


Spring at the River

March is all about Barrel Tasting (thre first 2 weekends) and Cheese! Cheese week is March 18 - 24 and local restaurants are featuring local cheeses and it all finishes up with a big ol' cheese fest in Petaluma on the weekend.

April: Sunshine and really great food. Yep, we do this all the time, but it's special in April. The Food & Wine Spring Fling is an afternoon of small bites from local restaurants and sips of fantastic local wines. It's a fundraiser for the Russian River Chamber and details/tickets are at

May: The fun is in full swing. Women's Weekend, Memorial Day Weekend to name a few

June is Pride Month and there is a lot of fun all over Sonoma County.

What to do? Your choices are varied:

Hiking: Armstrong Woods/Austin Creek is close to Guerneville and a great place for either a hike or a pleasant walk. There are also hiking and walking trails out nearer the ocean where the temperature will be about 20 degrees cooler!

Kayaking: this time of year we kayak the Russian River delta in Jenner or the Laguna de Santa Rosa near Sebastopol. Lots of wild life especially birds to see!

Bicycling: Great rides in the hills and throughout the county. 

Wine / Craft Beer / Spriit Tasting OR  Cheese / Creameries / Bakeries: To drink or not to drink? We've got tasty treats for everyone.

Art: First Friday Artwalk and a nice assortment of Art galleries. 

Pampering: Massage, facials, mani/pedi anyone? Several opportunities for pampering yourself and including a little 'spa' in your vacation.

Food: Lots of local restaurants from classic diners to farm-to-table. We've got a little of everything. With a huge selection of restaurants within a short drive. Outdoor dining? check. Pet friendly restaurant? check. Seafood with a view? check. Dive bar with good food? check. Gourmet icecream and Pie? double check.

Farmer's Market every Thursday June through September from 3 to 7pm. Live music every other week!

Booze: Yep. Wine from some of the best local wineries on the planet. Local beer (like right here - local). Crafted cocktails.

Theme Weekends and festivals: check out our calendar AND these local event calendars (R3 Hotel, Russian River Chamber, Sonoma County Tourism, Wine Road) Gay events in town include Women's Weekend (May); Sonoma County Pride (June); Lazy Bear (Aug ) and, of course, all the major summer holiday weekends (Memorial Day, July 4th and Labor Day).

Weekly events:

Fundraisers: Every 2nd Saturday the Russian River Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence throw a big ol' BINGO party to raise funds for any number of worthy causes (check out their calendar). Every week the Rainbow hosts 'Give Back Tuesday' to raise money for local charities.

Nightlife:  We've got live music at several of our local restaurants and bars (and, of course, at the River Theater), kareoke and local theater productions.

Outdoors: Hiking, Canoing, Kayaking, Horseback riding, Segway Touring, Wine tasting, Zipline through the Redwoods! Birding, wildflowers, tidepooling, fishing, kite flying (ok you need to go to the ocean for this as the trees get in the way!)

Warm & friendly locals. All ready to make your visit to our part of Sonoma County memorable (in a good way).

Hope to see you at the River soon!


Sonoma County's Gay Playground

The Russian River is the West Coast's favorite LGBT playground. Situated in the heart of Western Sonoma County, this string of offbeat river villages attracts thousands of LGBT visitors every year for a wide range of activities and fun.

Enjoy new experiences every time you visit. Gorgeous dry, sunny days dominate May - September, perfect for sunning by a pool with your friends or canoeing down the River. You can go biking, hiking and wine-tasting during the day, and every evening there is something happening at the bars & clubs.

Or you can decide to do nothing at all and relax after dinner to the sound of the wind in the redwoods.

Boasting over 250 of the world's most award-winning wineries, 76 miles of scenic coastline, pristine beaches, the mystical Russian River and majestic redwoods, Sonoma County is uniquely experienced with the Russian River as your home base.

The River offers all types of gay and gay-friendly accommodations from resorts and inns to camping under a canopy of brilliant stars. Local restaurants range from simple taquerias and burger joints to four star restaurants. Special weekends feature jazz, wine, women, leather and bears.

Guerneville is the focus of the area's gay nightlife - one of the few resort towns in the country where you can proudly walk down Main Street day or night.

Whether visiting for a weekend, a week or longer, you won't find any other getaway that matches the Russian River's unique and spectacular natural beauty, combined with friendly businesses and residents who genuinely appreciate diversity.

Come out to the River and see why so many people return year after year.