Work is finally starting on FAB, a gay bar and nightclub that is scheduled to open in the heart of the Tower District this summer.
For years, the only hint has been a unicorn with a rainbow shooting out of its backside painted on the windows of the Olive Avenue building between Tower Tattoos and La Tienda Guild thrift shop.
But now the unicorn is gone, replaced with barricades to hide the construction happening inside. Owner Cisco Mendez and his husband, Terry Story, bought the building three years ago and have been busy planning the business and getting a liquor license and other permits.
FAB — short for fabulous — will be open during the day and transition into a nightclub in the evening, says Mendez.
“We’re trying to create a safe space for everyone,” he says. “It lets people know — trans [gender] people, lesbian, gay people — that they can go into there and be themselves.”
It will be a safe place to hug or kiss a same-sex lover, he says. The straight community is welcome too.
FAB will have a stage and feature live music, comedians, magicians — all kinds of entertainment, says Mendez, who also has a side gig as a clown with Circus Et Cetera, a Fresno-based troop of belly dancers, fire dancers and stilt walkers.
“We’re not just going to focus on gay artists. We’re going to bring what we think this city needs,” he says. “I want to entertain people. That’s my goal.”
The building will have a modern industrial look, with lots of black and pink. It will have sliding glass doors that open to a patio area overlooking the sidewalk, similar to Bobby Salazar’s across the street.
“It will be a bright pink building in the end,” Mendez said.