Tom Wray

First Chicago Bear and Cub named at Bearfest

CHICAGO — Rough Rick won the first Chicago Bear title and Drew Recker won the first Chicago Cub title on Saturday, May 27, at Chicago’s Touche. The contest was the climax of the first Chicago Bearfest weekend. Touche manager David Boyer said during the contest that the Bearfest was started, basically at the last minute,…

First Chicago Bearfest kicks off this weekend

CHICAGO — While there is no Bear Pride this year, the bear community does have options along with International Mr. Leather. The first Chicago Bearfest starts on Thursday, May 25. People can start off the furry weekend at the Launch Party, held at Touche in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood. There will be a DJ and…

Springfield holds first Pride Parade

SPRINGFIELD — The state capital held it’s first-ever Pride Parade on Saturday, May 20, the State Journal-Register reported. The parade went down Fifth Street after starting at Allen Street and ended in the downtown area at the site of the annual PrideFest festival. The event was sponsored by the Phoenix Center, Springfield’s gay community center. Organizers told…

IML 2017 send off for Mr. Fetish Jackhammer, Mr. Leather 64TEN

CHICAGO — Jackhammer and leather store Leather 64TEN held an IML send-off for their contestants at Jackhammer on Saturday, May 13. Slade Travis, Mr. Fetish Jackhammer 2017, and TJ Howard, Mr. Leather 64TEN 2017, will be two of three contestants representing Chicago at International Mr. Leather over Memorial Day weekend. Saturday was also TJ’s birthday…

ILGRA names new Mr. ILGRA 2017

CHICAGO — The Illinois Gay Rodeo Association (ILGRA) named Shawn Bennett as their Mr. ILGRA 2017 on Saturday, May 13. Shawn will represent ILGRA and help promote the rodeo over the next year with Ashley Morgan, Miss ILGRA 2017. Ashley is also the owner of The Call, a bar at the northern edge of Chicago’s…

Pro-LGBTQ candidates win in local elections

CHICAGO–The Equality Illinois PAC celebrates major pro-LGBTQ victories in Tuesday’s local and school board elections, including the election of pro-trans school board candidates in races contested by anti-equality opponents and the election of six LGBTQ-identified candidates in Berwyn. In Palatine-based High School District 211, incumbents Anna Klimkowicz and Robert LeFevre and challenger Edward Yung prevailed…

Cupcake Wars raises $2,500 for Broadway Youth Center

CHICAGO — Trident Windy City’s annual Cupcake Wars fundraiser raised a record $2,500 for the Broadway Youth Center on Sunday, April 2. The backpatch club invited clubs and organizations from across Chicago to participate in its annual bake-off. All money raised goes to support BYC, the Howard Brown Health Center’s youth center. The BYC offers refuge,…

Daddy G wins Mr. Chicago Leather 2017

CHICAGO — Gerald Cernak, aka Daddy G, won the Mr. Chicago Leather 2017 title on Saturday, Jan. 28 at the Leather Archives & Museum. Daddy G was one of two contestants in this year’s contest, well down from past years. IML 2003 John Pendal came back for his 14th run as contest emcee. The contest…

Illinois comes out to march for women

CHICAGO — While Chicago had the largest in the state, and one of the largest in the country, sister marches to the Women’s March on Washington took place across Illinois, including traditionally conservative cities. The Chicago Tribune reported that about 250,000 people flooded into downtown to participate in the march. Organizers originally expected 40,000 when…

Pup Vegas wins Imperial Windy City Court Puppy 2017

CHICAGO — Pup Vegas won the first Imperial Windy City Court Puppy contest on Saturday, July 30, at Chicago’s Jackhammer bar. This was the first year for the contest. The previous titleholder, Pup Vino, was appointed to the title and later went on to win Mr. Midwest Leather 2016. Vegas will go on to the…