Long Beach has a rich history with the LGBTQ+ community, from its prominent gay bars in the 1950s to Long Beach Pride, which is now the third largest pride festival in the state. Retro Row began to play a role in this history when it was established on Fourth St. in the 1980s.
Long Beach is known for LGBTQ+ representation throughout the city. The Retro Row district, in particular, offers a unique blend of businesses that line the streets.
The establishments on Retro Row are diverse and cater toward everyone’s interests, from entertainment, food and drink and shopping to special services for the LGBTQ+ community. Many businesses on Retro Row are also a part of the Safe Spaces Alliance, which means they have taken a pledge to be a safe space for LGBTQ+ people.
As you walk down this street, pride and diversity are expressed through displays of artwork. Individuals are able to appreciate the pride colors, flags and paintings, custom clothing and accessories that businesses display.
This section of Fourth St. is home to shops like CoffeeDrunk, Art Du Vin, Plantiitas, Meow Vintage, Salud Juice Bar, Little Coyote Pizza and The Hangout. Shayna Meikle, queer business owner of Pigeon’s Skate Shop, has earned over 190,000 followers on Instagram, catering to her audience for over 10 years now.
This community hosts events every Friday called “Fourth Fridays” where the community can connect and support local vendors. The plant nursery, Plantiitas, is preparing for their Halloween workshops starting on Oct. 8 through Oct. 28, where they are celebrating the holiday with a variety of fun and creative activities.
Fourth St. Retro Row in Long Beach proudly stands as a vibrant symbol of LGBTQ+ representation, offering a diverse array of businesses that celebrate pride, diversity and community. With weekly events, it continues to be a welcoming district where people come together to support local vendors, local businesses and embrace the city’s rich LGBTQ+ culture.