Inaugural Mr. Illinois Bear contest on April 15

Mr. Illinois BearCHICAGO — After years without a local bear contest, the first Mr. Illinois Bear and Illinois Bear Cub contests will be at Jackhammer on April 15.

Contest organizer Scott Turner, himself a former International Bear, said he started organizing the contest because there was no state or local bear contest anymore. The contest will also be a fundraiser for co-sponsor the Imperial Windy City Court’s charities (Autism Speaks and Vital Bridges) plus the court’s scholarship fund.

The winners will get medallions and patches, along with gift certificates from bear themed t-shirt vendors, gift cards from various local bars, Bear Skin undergear, $50 each from Jackhammer and adult DVDs with more prizes being added in the run-up to the contest.

(Editor’s note: Great Lakes Den and Windy City Banner are media sponsors of the contest.)

The judges for the first contest are:

  • Jeff Willoughby, Mr. Chicago Leather 2005
  • Justin Herren, Mr. Fetish Jackhammer 2015
  • Pup Ryker, Mr. Heartland Leather 2015
  • Eric Masters. Mr. 501 Eagle 2016
  • Christopher Clai

Three local bears have already signed up to compete and Scott said the community response has been very good.

“We anticipate a good turnout for this event,” he said. “Being its first year and fairly quickly organized, we hope to grow it more in the coming years.”

The event page for the contest is at

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