Everyone loves a party, and no neighborhood more than the Castro. This past Sunday, the masses gathered for the last big bash before Halloween. (If there even is a party this Halloween. We’ll see.)

The fair was the usual mix of gay guys and gals, drag queens and trannies, leather daddies and cubs, and a sprinkling of straights for good measure.

Street fairs to me were always about old ladies selling tarts and cookies with offers of Earl Grey tea. There were tarts at the Castro Street fair, for sure, but not a cookie or cuppa in sight. Instead we found brews—of the malt variety—as vendors offered up suds to the sun-kissed thirsty crowd.

The Castro Street fair is always festive; it’s the last event of summer, our Indian summer, and a last chance to sport wife-beaters and shorts.

At one point in the afternoon, a Blue Angel jet flew above and a universal cheer rang out as heads craned toward the clear, blue sky. The Angels performed circus tricks in the sky a little earlier in the day, and a friend remarked, “He’s the gay pilot that got away.” Indeed!

An afternoon in the sun with loved ones and friends, and familiar faces you know you won’t see again until next year.