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A venue that has been home to a gay bar since the before the Stonewall Riots is at risk of closing permanently. The Eagle LA was opened in April 2006 by Charlie Matula and business partner Vince Quattrocchi, but its location at 4219 Santa Monica Blvd. in Silver Lake, Los Angeles has served as a watering hole for queers since it was The Shed (1968-1972).
Then site then became The Outcast (1972-1983), and the Gauntlet II (1983 -2005) before becoming the Eagle LA in 2006 under Charlie Matula and business partner Vince Quattrocchi. (An earlier Eagle operated in West Hollywood (1980-1995). To save the bar from closing permanently, Matula has started a GoFundMe campaign, seeking $240,000.
Charlie Matula, owner of EagleLA. Photo by Dusti Cunningham dusticunningham.com
When the premier leather / Levi bar in Los Angeles had to close its doors in March 2020 in face of the global pandemic, Matula writes on the fundraising site, "we hunkered down and did everything possible to stay in business. Surviving this devastating financial hardship has been extremely difficult. Although we did receive relief loans at the beginning of the pandemic, we never expected the forced closures to go on this long."
The number of LGBTQ+ bars operating in the U.S. has declined steeply in the past 5 years, and, Matula writes, "We have lost too many historic venues resulting from this pandemic already, which is changing the face of our community. This is why we are asking for your help to keep Eagle LA from closing permanently. With your support, we'll be able to continue to ride this out until we can safely reopen in what is expected to be months from now."