Where To Watch RuPaul's Drag Race In LA -- And Beyond
The gay Super Bowl is back! Mere weeks after the Drag Race All Stars season 4 finale, the 11th season of RuPaul's Drag Racekicks off this Thursday, Feb. 28, at 9 p.m.
The Emmy-winning VH1 show is great to watch at your leisure, with friends, when you can pause to cackle over crucial moments like Vanessa Vanjie Mateo's weird "Whatever Happened To Baby Jane?" exit. But there's electricity in the air when you watch Drag Race in real-time at a local gay bar, rubbing toned deltoids with other fans lubricated by alcohol, enthusiasm and snark.
Feel the air rush out of the room as you clock the next stunning look! Gasp in awe at the latest crotch-straining death drop! Scream in joy as you witness Great Moments in Gay History!
Don't believe how intense it gets? Watch what happens when Trixie Mattel wins All Stars 3.
@trixiemattel you’re a winner baby!!! Congrats from all of us at @FlamingSaddlesW!!!@RuPaulsDragRace #allstars3 #dragrace pic.twitter.com/CJ4yEiVwdP— Devlin Andrews (@devlinralph) March 16, 2018
Crowds pack into gay bars around the country to watch Drag Race, but because this is Los Angeles, you have the bonus option of seeing former contestants host or appear as guest stars at viewing parties that go above and (Lashauwn) BEYOND. Here's your almost exhaustive guide on where to watch Drag Race in person.
Corral your pals for a trip to this country western bar where Ongina from season 1 (and hopefully a future All-Stars season 🤞) hosts the party. She'll take the mic shortly before the broadcast, and starting March 6th, there will be drag performances by Kornbread's Buffet.
8811 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood.
When: Get there by 7:30 p.m. to grab a seat and to catch the pre-show.
Specials: Happy hour ends at 8 p.m. While it lasts, get $7 vodkas, $5 draft beer and $5 Fireballs and Jager shots.
Post-show entertainment: Ongina performs alone and with the Flaming Saddles Cowboy dancers.
33 Taps Silver Lake
Winner winner, a bike and chicken dinner. Play drag bingo as season 3 contestant Mariah Balenciaga hosts a weekly viewing party at this sports bar and restaurant. It's free to play, and past prizes have included t-shirts, towels and a Stella bike (!!!). The biggest prizes are the special guests Mariah brings each week, including past contenders Manila Luzon, Chi Chi DeVayne and Jasmine Masters. 33 Taps Silver Lake is all ages, meaning your drag-loving minors can join the party.
3725 Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake
When: Bingo starts at 8 p.m. and the show airs at 9 p.m. But the staff recommends you get there by 7:45 p.m. if you want a seat.
Post-show entertainment: Stay for Untucked at 10:30 p.m., which is required watching for true fans, then karaoke at 11 p.m.
It's hard to avoid spoilers when you live on the West Coast since your East Coast fam will start posting their reactions right away. Fix that by heading to Akbar, which airs the show in the main room starting at 6 p.m. At that hour, it's a relaxed bar where you're likely to run into your neighbors.
4356 Sunset Blvd, Silver Lake
When: 6 p.m. showtime
Specials: Happy hour will be in effect the whole time. $5 well drinks, $4 Anchor Steam on draft, $3 PBRs and $3 Tecate cans
Post-show entertainment: Stick around for the Dirty Dirty House Club dance party, which specializes in house music, naturally, at 9 p.m.
This bar attracts some of the most passionate Drag Race fans, and it gets loud, crowded and exciting. Get to the main room early to secure a spot near the front, especially if you're short. If you want more breathing room, head to the main bar or upstairs patio. The night is hosted by Biqtch Puddin', a star in her own right and the winner of Dragula, the gothy drag queen reality-competition cousin of Drag Race. Definitely arrive early if you're going the night of the premiere or the finale as the lines to get in will snake around the block.
357 S. Broadway, downtown L.A.
When: 8 p.m. showtime - yes, an hour earlier than the regular West Coast feed. It's a good option when you want to go out but it's a school night.
Specials: There will be drink specials each night, plus giveaways for weekend tickets to the upcoming RuPaul's DragCon.
Post-show entertainment: Dance like everyone's watching, because after the show DJ Foxylectro hosts Cheap & Easy: The Underwear Party. There will also be more drink specials and gogo boys through the rest of the night.
Shawn Morales, a former member of the Drag Race pit crew (who returns to the show once in a while), presides over a relaxed screening at this Silver Lake leather bar. The party is spread across three rooms: stay near the main bar for the most energy, head to the side bar for more personal space or stake out a spot in the pool room for some fresh air.
4219 Santa Monica Blvd., Silver Lake.
When: 8 p.m. showtime
Specials: Happy hour special deals run until 9 p.m., so you'll have more than enough time to get a cocktail in your hand before anyone lip syncs for their life.
Post-show entertainment: B Bar, the Eagle's regular Thursday night event for bears, cubs, otters and other gays-who-go-by-animal-names, takes over the floor with dancing, a bear chest contest and more.
You can watch the show facing almost any direction thanks to the bar's eight screens. The rotating cast of hosts will sometimes include past contestants. The pre-show, hosted by VJ Stalker Channing, starts at 7 p.m. and includes clips from past lip syncs, episodes of Untucked and snippets from Drag Race Thailand, which is transcendent. (Subscribe to WOW Presents+ to watch it in the U.S.) Plus, you won't get bored during commercial breaks because drag queens take the stage for mini-performances.
4216 Melrose Ave, Silver Lake.
When: 8 p.m. showtime
Specials: Happy hour specials run from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. but great news: there will also be Drag Race-themed drink specials during the show.
Post-show entertainment: You in your underwear! The Unzipped party takes over the bar after Drag Race, with gogo boys and fog machines clouding up the dance floor. Patrons who strip to their underwear get $5 cocktails and more drink specials.
Highland Park has a burgeoning queer/drag scene driven by the weekly performances of Exposure Drag at the Offbeat. Vicky Jean Mochi hosts as the show screens on the bar's three TVs. Stick around after to see local queens in action. Plus, FREE TACOS AT 10!
6316 York Blvd., Highland Park
When: 8 p.m. showtime
Specials: Arrive early for a seat. Happy hour specials end at 8 p.m.
Post-show entertainment: Exposure Drag puts on a half-hour mini-drag show right after Drag Race. After that, there's an '80s dance party at 10 p.m. and free tacos (YES, FREE TACOS!).
Play Drag Race-themed bingo at this bar, where drag queen Pinche (also a past contestant on Dragula) hosts. Starting in March, Ongina from season 1 will host a post-show competition for new drag queens, kings and other artists, with a weekly prize of $100.
131 E. 6th St., downtown L.A.
When: 9 p.m. showtime
Specials: $8 Three Olives cocktails
Post-show entertainment: Maybe you, because next month is season 2 of New Queens, a bar competition for drag artists who've been doing it less than one year.
Queer Resource Center of the Claremont Colleges
This is one of the few watch parties in Southern California that isn't at a bar or restaurant, but snacks and non-alcoholic drinks will be provided. The screenings here are only open to students, staff and faculty of the colleges, though, and will last until school's out for summer.
395 E 6th St, Claremont.
When: 9 p.m. showtime
Hamburger Mary's Ontario
Many Drag Race queens got their start or earned their coin at this venerable burger chain. The Inland Empire outpost throws a viewing party co-hosted by April Showers and Wilhelmina Caviar. During commercial breaks, there are games, Q&A sessions and performances. It's all ages so the little ones (and big teenagers) can stay up past their bedtimes and watch. Reservations are highly recommended. If you get a table, there's a two-item order minimum per person.
3550 Porsche Way, Ontario
When: 9:30p showtime
Specials: $5 "Ru-tinis" all night
Pre-show entertainment: no post-show but get there early for Paint Nite, starting at 7 p.m.
Hamburger Mary's Long Beach
The Long Beach outpost hosts its own dinner and viewing party with a rotating cast of queens. Former contestants Kimora Blac and Naysha Lopez preside over premiere night, with more queens showing up throughout the season. There's no charge to watch the show, but if you'd like to sit down at a table, you must order something or pay a $10 charge. All ages are welcome during the broadcast then minors have to scram at 10 p.m. once the post-show entertainment starts.
330 Pine Ave, Long Beach.
When: 8 p.m. showtime
Specials: Get there early for happy hour, which runs until 7 p.m., and features $7 margaritas, $10.50 ruby coolers and more.
Post-show entertainment: Get your dollar bills ready for Leche Fiesta, a weekly dance party by Club Papi featuring Latino gogo dancers. No cover charge if you were already at the restaurant for the Drag Race.
VIP Nightclub and Restaurant
The Inland Empire club has TWO screenings of Drag Race, one for the younguns and another for the olds. The first streams at 5 p.m., when it airs on the East Coast, and the other happens at 8 p.m. Night owls should stay for the bar's local drag review, SHEnanigans, hosted by queen Syren Halston.
3673 Merrill Ave., Riverside.
When: 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. showtimes
Specials: $1 tacos from 6 p.m. to midnight, $2 off drinks from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., and $2 well cocktails from 8 p.m. to midnight.
Post-show entertainment: SHEnanigans starts at 11 p.m. There's a $5 cover charge for 21+, and 18- to 20-year-olds can stay, with a $10 cover.
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