New Illinois Bear Contest titleholders announced

CHICAGO — The 2019 Illinois Bear Contest was this past weekend in Chicago at the Jackhammer Bar on the far north side. The winners this year are:

Mama Bear winner – Queenie
Illinois Bear winner – Zerberus
Illinois Cub winner – Boone

The contest was emceed by drag queen Truly Scrumptious from Cincinnati.

Bear Necessities coming up in Des Moines

DES MOINES — The Capital Bears of Des Moines are holding their annual Bear Necessities bear run on May 17. There is still time to register at the Capital Bears website. The schedule;
Friday
3:00 – 6:00PM – Welcome to Des Moines – Comfort Inn Host Hotel
​6:30 – 8:00PM – Salad Tossing Contest – AllSpice – Locust St – East Village – Free Event – Limited Tickets – See Event/Salad Tossing Contest
​8:00-10:00PM – BEARTENDERS Bear Social & bear Grill Out (suggested Donation) – The Blazing Saddle
​10:00PM – Saddle Gurls  Show – The Blazing Saddle
7:oo – 9:00AM – Tour the Famous Des Moines Farmers market 

Saturday
8:00 – 10:00AM – Bear Coffee with Paul – Ritual Cafe
​9:00 – 10:00AM – Papa Gene’s Downtown Walking Tour
​10:30 – 12:30PM – LUNCH – On Your OWN or with Some Capital Bears showing you Around
^12:00PM – 6:00PM – The Bear Cave – PRivate Event Space 
– Beach Bear – Theme^ (This Night, Wear your best beach Gear. You can get down to your jocks or as comfortable as you feel)
​^5:00PM – Included Dinner from Smokey D’s Award Winning BBQ^
​7:00-10:00PM – Beach BEAR Happy Hour – The Garden NightClub  ​** No Cover b4 8pm for Bear Variety Show**
​8:30PM – Bear Variety Show – The Garden Night Club**
​Dance The Night Away atThe Garden Nightclub If you Like Or… ​^11:30 – 1:30AM – Bear Pool Party – Host Hotel -Comfort Inn Des MoinesDowntown POOL^
​HOSPITALITY ROOM OPEN

JJ’s Clubhouse in St. Louis up for sale

ST. LOUIS — The Riverfront Times reported Friday that JJ’s Clubhouse, a LGBTQ bar known for as a home for the area’s bear and leather communities, is up for sale. The alternative newspaper came across this listing describing “One of the biggest alternative nightclubs in the Midwest with 3 bars and 21,000 sq. ft. of space,” not far from the Tower Grove area, which sounds a lot like JJ’s.

Touché presents Bear All on March 23

CHICAGO — Touché will present the latest BEAR ALL, a night of live music and song featuring the talent of local gay singers/songwriters at 9pm on Saturday, March 23rd. Over the past eight years, Scott Free, host of the long running Homolatte music series, has produced these BEAR ALL performances at Touché. Each of these special nights has showcased the talents of local gay artists expressing their passions, lives and sometimes politics of the gay male experience all in an acoustical setting. Featured performers in this first edition for 2019 of BEAR ALL include:

MANNY PETTY

Manny Petty lies somewhere between Tom Petty and a Mani-Pedi. Manny is a stand up guitarist and musical entertainer specializing in original music and parody songs.

River City Bears 2019 Jock Auction Fundraiser in May

CHICAGO — The River City Bears of Peoria and the Illinois Bear Contests are joining forces for a fundraiser in Chicago in May. From the Facebook event:
The River City Bears are invading Chicago with their 2019 Jock Auction Fundraiser. Join Central Illinois Bear 2018 Mateo Jose Martinez and Central Illinois Cub 2018 Justin Reeves as they host this fantastic event and raise money for The Matthew Shepard Foundation and The PFS Shelter (Pets For Seniors) of Peoria. Wait…we have more. Not only will you have the opportunity to bid, win, and claim a jock off one of our 12 sexy models, but we are also holding a raffle.

Social media company buys Growlr for $11.8 million

NEW HOPE, Pa. — App company The Meet Group announced Wednesday that it had bought gay dating app Growler for $11.8 million. “We are thrilled to add Growlr to The Meet Group portfolio,” said Geoff Cook, CEO of The Meet Group, in a press release. “Similar to what we have done with our other acquired properties, we plan to be aggressive in bringing our video model to Growlr. We expect to begin rolling out live video on Growlr in the fourth quarter of 2019.

#1commUNITY to make a difference for cancer research, fundraising, fellowship

New non-profit to partner with other organizations to fundraise in memory of Illinois Cub 2017. CHICAGO — #1commUNITY is a non-profit created with the belief that it is only through coming together as one family can we truly overcome any obstacle in our way. To help foster the concept of Ohana they will be producing raising money for cancer research and awareness, focusing our efforts on St. Jude Children’s Hospital. While located in the Chicagoland area, they have members all over the country who will be fundraising and bringing their message to people everywhere.

HiBearNation 24: Fifty Shades of Bear

ST. LOUIS — The Show Me Bears of St. Louis will be hosting their 34th bear run, Hibernation, on Nov. 1 through 4. From the Facebook event page:
The Show-Me Bears present HiBearNation 24: Fifty Shades of Bear November 1st- 4th in Saint Louis, Missouri.

New Central Illinois Bear, Cub sashed in Peoria

PEORIA — Mateo Martinez won Central Illinois Bear 2018 and Justin Reeves won Central Illinois Cub on Saturday, Sept. 29, in Peoria. The annual contest was hosted by the River City Bears at Blondies. Other sponsoring businesses included The Jackhammer Complex, Leather 64TEN, and Club Diesel. The emcee was Chicago entertainer Diamond Richards Devereaux.