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Palm Springs International Bear Convergence 2014

The first ever IBC - International Bear Convergence in Palm Springs California is slated for Valentine / President Day weekend in 2014. Specifically that means Thursday, February 14th through Monday the 17th. Daily pool parties, nightly dance parties with renowned DJ’s from around the globe and more are planned.

The host hotel for IBC - The Renaissance Palm Springs is a 400+ room behemoth ideal for large gatherings and in it’s spectacular courtyard there’s a huge 5000 square foot heated pool promising the largest batch of Bear Soup ever created on planet earth. Of course as a public, mixed accommodation, swim suits will NOT be optional and reasonably civilized Bear behavior will be required.

Sadly, none of the Gay resorts in the Coachella Valley have anywhere near the rooms or scale to handle the turnout IBC is expected to draw. The location of the Renaissance at 888 E. Tahquitz Canyon Way however is perfect: Centrally located and just a few easy to walk blocks from the heart of downtown Palm Springs and the Gay Arenas strip of bars, restaurants and shops catering to our Out and Proud LGBT community.

For Bears with thin wallets, the $180+/night rates to stay at the International Bear Convergence host hotel might seem a bit stiff. However, you’ll be close to the action and far more likely to make connections by staying on-site. Locals like me who want to attend IBC 2014’s happenings can arm themselves by pre-ordering a $70 weekend event pass to get into the IBC event pool parties and dances. Other visitors might be seeking more affordable accommodations elsewhere. Of the Gay, clothing-optional resorts in Palm Spring’s centrally located Warm Sands neighborhood, I’d personally recommend either Vista Grande or especially All Worlds Resort for a diverse crowd and best facilities (4 pools, 2 spas, and steamy steamroom) more in the $120 a night range. Leather types might prefer Chaps Inn, or more Generic Bears might consider the recently opened Bearfoot Inn - both on the north-end of downtown Palm Springs.

For even more affordable accommodations, some of the cheaper 2nd and 3rd tier hotels and motels in Palm Springs can be found south of Downtown around the curve of South and East Palm Canyon drive. There, you’re more likely to find budget rooms in the $60-90 a night range. Remember, February is peak of tourist season in the Desert Cities so rates overall will be higher than summer or fall.

What to wear, Bear? Sunny days in the 70’s are what draw thousands to Palm Springs during the winter months. But February nights do get a bit chilly so think dressing in light layers after the sun sets. Poolside, you know I prefer Spandex-Clad Speedo Muscle Bears whenever possible and I’m hoping 2014’s International Bear Convergence brings the largest gathering of SpeedoBears ever before seen in the United States.

For reservation info to book a room, buy an event pass, or see the event schedule and more, visit: