Thousands of leather and fetish fans from around the world are expected to descend on Berlin for Folsom Europe from September 8 – 12 this year.

Founded eight years ago in emulation of San Francisco’s notorious Folsom Street Fair, Folsom Europe has quickly grown into a successful mega-event with a reputation in its own right around the world.

Europe’s largest fetish event begins with a huge street festival in Berlin’s gay Schoneberg district from noon on September 8. More than 25,000 people took part in 2010.

A DJ stage will be at the end of Schoneberg’s Fuggerstrasse, near Ansbacher St, while in the Welserstrasse you can find the fair’s ‘Gourmet Mile’.

Like Sydney’s Mardi Gras Fair Day, many clubs and organisations with a fetish bent will be present, with numerous stalls inviting you to try their products. Bars and restaurants will keep you refreshed and vie for your attention with their tasty treats.

Other Folsom highlights include the Perverts party in Berlin’s massive Glashaus and the Pig party — both on Saturday night. Around 5000 people attended last year’s parties, dancing to top international DJs.

Expect to also see winners from the leather and fetish scene from around the world at the fair collecting donations for the many HIV/AIDS projects that Folsom Europe supports.

Folsom has a decidedly decadent reputation but responsible behaviour regarding safe sex and drugs is expected by organisers and genitals are to remain covered at all times while in public.

Organisers expect locals to warmly welcome international guests but visitors to Folsom are also expected to act like guests — after all, this is a fetish event that has grown to be so successful that it will be opened by the Mayor of Berlin this year!

Photo: chrisjepson.com

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