top of page

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Jay Collins was born in 1953 and raised with his five siblings in Beverley, MA. His family owned and managed the Lighthouse Cafe and Fran’s Place for multiple generations. Jay was the most recent owner and manager of Fran’s until its closing in 2016. Tisha Sterling, born and raised in Gloucester, MA was a beloved bartender, manager, and drag performer at Fran’s Place from 1986 to 2016. The two close friends and longtime coworkers exchanged stories about their time at Fran’. Their interview includes perspectives on the bar’s relationship with the Lynn Police Department, competing bars, AIDS advocacy, the Night of 100 Stars, Drag, and the changing nature of the LGBTQ+ community.

Watch Full Interview

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Duration

1:37:37

Watch Interview Moments

Click an image to watch a moment.

My parents were behind me one hundred percent.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

I started drag at a contest at Fran's.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

We started Latino Nights in 1996.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

I was bullied in school.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The police would drink at the bar.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

I got harassed about dad's gay bar.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Fran's had frequent fires.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Closing was like giving up their home.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The lesbians were the best.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

I tried to keep it going.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Mayor Clancy rolled back closing time to 1:00.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The neighborhood was rezoned as residential.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

If you call him queer, I'm charging you.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Passers by would throw things at us.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Boats would pull up to the Light House.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

We did fundraisers for Councilor Hong Net.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Why do people love drag?

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

If I acted like that, I'd be dead.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The pride flag is changing.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

I came out when I was fourteen.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

We did benefits for AIDS, cancer and hospitals.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Fran's had great Saturday dance nights.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Women's bowling leagues came to the Light House.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Dad's priest said they aren't doing anything wrong.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

We bought the burned building in 1975.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Gay or straight, it's the place to dance.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

I knew so many people.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

I cried as I locked the doors.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The clientelle changed with gay rights.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The Lynn police took good care of us.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

My parents were always tight with the police.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The newer generation of police are more open.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Who was Joe the cop?

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

We lost thousands to AIDS.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Our fundraiser was the Night of 100 Stars.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

The new language and transitioning are confusing.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

It's starting to get a little confusing.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Small fundraisers for people who lost loved ones.

Tisha Sterling and Jay Collins

Images

ULP Logo Round 2024.png

Feedback
© 2024 United Lynn Pride Inc.
United Lynn Pride Inc. is a 501(c)3 Tax Exempt Non-Profit Organization
EIN: 88-4123340

#UnitedLynnPride
Connect with us on Social Media

Facebook_logo_(square).png
-11590303444ezlkboanlo_edited.jpg
bottom of page