SAN FRANCISCO -- The lobby of San Francisco’s stylish Parc 55 Hotel was packed with bears. Not beasts from the forest, but large, hirsute gay men in jeans and hoodies.
The men gathered for the International Bear Rendezvous last month, lounging on red Barcelona chairs and hugging near the elevators. Over the last 17 years, the event has attracted thousands of grizzly men and their admirers from around the world.
But this year’s festivities marked a bittersweet finale — the bear event is now extinct.