Gypsy’s Restaurant

in Restaurants and Cafes

Gypsy’s Restaurant, a late-night restaurant and tavern, opened at 2418 St. Clair Avenue in 1975. Gypsy’s Restaurant, named after owner and operator Gypsy, was a popular after-hours dining destination for LGBT+ clubgoers and local factory workers alike. Gypsy’s served a wide variety of meals prepared in-house and offered a relaxed environment that invited patrons to eat, relax, and unwind. Though Gypsy himself was a well-known figure in 1970s gay social circles, Gypsy’s Restaurant itself was not marketed as an exclusively gay establishment. In 1976, Cleveland’s second unofficial gay pride march started outside of Gypsy’s Restaurant. The march, organized by the Metropolitan Community Church, stepped off outside of Gypsy’s Restaurant Saturday, July 10, 1976. Though Gypsy’s did not typically open on Saturdays, Gypsy opened on this date in order to accommodate the nearly 100 LGBT+ marchers assembled outside on St. Clair Avenue. Reflecting on the march nearly a decade later, Gypsy remembered having witnessed local straight factory workers “hanging out the windows [of nearby businesses], watching the crowd” before the march stepped off. When Gypsy’s Restaurant reopened on the Monday following the march, Gypsy found that the majority of the restaurant’s former straight patrons had neglected to place their regular orders. After attempting to get in contact with several former patrons regarding this steep and unexpected drop-off in business, Gypsy found that the unexpected decline in business was directly connected to the restaurant’s association with the gay pride march. Gypsy concluded that “they thought it [homosexuality] was contagious. So [that was why] I lost that part of the restaurant business.” Though straight patronage sharpy declined in the months that followed, Gypsy’s maintained a steady LGBT+ clientele. Gypsy later opened Gypsy’s Jungle, an “intimate cocktail lounge,” next door to Gypsy’s Restaurant in 1977. Gypsy’s Restaurant and Gypsy’s Jungle both closed in early 1978.

Additional information coming soon.


  • Beck, Chuck. “Gypsy.” Gay People’s Chronicle. January 1989. Page 11.
  • Gypsy. “The 1976 Parade.” Gay People’s Chronicle. August 1986. Page 5.
  • “Gypsy Remodels.” High Gear. May 1976. Page 11.
  • Nosek, John, and Leon Stevens. “Gay Community 1970s.” Encyclopedia of Cleveland History.
  • Nosek, John. “Odds and Ends.” High Gear. March 1977. Page 5.
  • Nosek, John. “Odds and Ends.” High Gear. November 1975. Page 16.
  • Robinson, Chris. “Ch…Cha…Changes.” High Gear. August 1976. Page 29.
  • Robinson, Chris. “Ch…Cha…Changes.” High Gear. July 1976. Page 24.
2418 St Clair Ave NE, Cleveland, OH 44114

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