A transgender man of color wins International Mr. Leather

CHICAGO — Jack Thompson, a transgender man of color, has won International Mr. Leather 2019 this past weekend. International Mr. Leather is a leather contest held annual in Chicago over Memorial Day weekend. Contestants come from around the world and fill the Loop with thousands of people in leather and rubber gear. 

Thompson is the first transgender man of color to win the title. The last trans titleholder, Tyler McCormick of New Mexico, won the title in 2010. The last person of color to win the title was James Lee of Louisville, Kentucky in 2018. 

According to our sister site Great Lakes Den, the first runner-up was Jawn Marques of San Francisco and the second runner-up was Fionn Scott of Ireland. 

Kriszly De Hond of the Netherlands won the other title given this weekend, International Mr. Bootblack.

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.

Fourth Annual MR.LEATHER64TEN Contest to be held in Chicago, March 9

CHICAGO — Save the Date and join the fourth annual MR.LEATHER64TEN contest weekend to be held from March 7 – March 10, 2019. LEATHER64TEN and The Jackhammer Complex will once again host a weekend of events to promote our search for the next MR.LEATHER64TEN, who will represent us at IML 2019. About MR.LEATHER64TEN 2019:

The MR.LEATHER64TEN contest and weekend events were created to help the Chicagoland leather community explore, celebrate and showcase their leather pride. “Our contest started only 4 years ago and we are amazed at the support and participation that we continue to receive.  We are very excited to bring our 4th annual MR.LEATHER64TEN contest back to the leather community and look forward to meeting all of you during this exciting weekend.  We have two amazing organizations involved this year as beneficiaries of our raffle sales: Leather Archives & Museum and CLAW Nation. My hope in having the MR.LEATHER64TEN contest is the opportunity to award someone the experience of a lifetime to enjoy and participate in International Mr. Leather 2019,” said Eric Kugelman, owner of LEATHER64TEN.

Sabre Onyx wins Mr. Chicago Leather 2019

CHICAGO — Sabre Onyx won Mr. Chicago Leather Saturday night in Chicago. He will be one of the titleholders representing Illinois and the Chicago area at International Mr. Leather on Memorial Day weekend. The judges for the contest were:

IML 2018 James Lee
Rodi Coderage – Mr. Midwest Rubber 2018
Mr. Twin Cities Leather 2018 Pup Buster Richard William
Mr Chicago Leather 2018, Stitch Stitch Leatherdandy
Issa Arden

Mr. Chicago Leather 2019 coming in January

CHICAGO — Mr. Chicago Leather will be held at Touché in Chicago the weekend of Jan. 25 through 27. The contest will select Chicago’s entry to International Mr. Leather in May. The producers have announced the judges, staff and schedule on their Facebook event:
Master of Ceremonies- International Mister Leather 2003 John Pendal

IML 2018 James Lee
Rodi Coderage – Mr. Midwest Rubber 2018
Mr. Twin Cities Leather 2018 Pup Buster Richard William
Mr Chicago Leather 2018, Stitch Stitch Leatherdandy
Issa Arden

Mr. Chicago Leather 2006 Robin Czar
American Leatherwoman 2018 Sky Cotton

Den Daddy- Mr. Chicago Leather 2014 Miguel Torres

*All events at Touché unless noted

Thursday, January 24, 2019

6-8pm- Full Kit Gear Chicago 4th Year Anniversary @5021 North Clark Street
7pm-Midnight- MCL2019 Registration- Pick up or purchase packages, contestant entry deadline 10pm

Friday, January 25, 2019

5pm-Midnight- MCL2019 Registration- Pick up or purchase packages, sales of MCL2019 merchandise
10pm- Welcome Cocktail Party- Meet judges, contestants and other guests, Intros and number drawing by contestants
Midnight- Roast of MCL2018 Stitch- Mr Chicago Leather 2018, Stitch takes a licking, Hosted by Thib Guicherd-Callin Mr. Santa Clara County Leather 2012

Saturday, January 26, 2019

11am-Noon- Leather Eyeopeners- Complimentary coffee & continental breakfast
Noon-4pm- Fetish Flea Market- Buy- sell – trade leather, rubber, uniforms, boots, gear, equipment- clean out the closet or shop for bargains! no fee to participate
1-4pm- Kink U at Mr. Chicago Leather Weekend presented by Titans of The Midwest- admission free, must be 21 or older.

Mr. Chicago Leather 2018 this weekend

CHICAGO — The Mr. Chicago Leather 2018 contest will be this weekend, with the main events being held at the Leather Archives & Museum. The judges for this year are:

Mr. ICON Detroit 2017 Joey Dinello
Mr. Illinois Bear 2017 Freddy Miranda
Mr. Midwest Rubber 2017 Pup Link
International Mister Leather 2017 Ralph Bruneau
Gerald “Daddy G” Cernak, Mr. Chicago Leather 2017

The tallymasters are Mr. Tri-State Leather 2012 Isaac Emerson and Chicago community member Stephen Turchin. Mr. Chicago Leather 2014 Miguel Torres will be the den daddy. The schedule of events is:

Friday, Jan. 26

Touché open 5pm – 4 am

MCL2018 Registration 5pm – midnight Pick up weekend packages, sales of individual tickets, merchandise
Guest Artist Gallery Reception 7-9pm at the Leather Archives & Museum opening of MEN as seen through the lens of inkedKenny
MCL2018 Welcome Cocktail Party- 10 pm Meet judges, contestants and other guests, introductions and number drawing by contestants at 11 pm hosted by John Pendal IML 2003
Roast of Gerald “Daddy G” Cernak- Midnight Mr. Chicago Leather 2017 takes a licking, Hosted by Thib Guicherd-Callin, Mr. Santa Clara County Leather 2012

Saturday, Jan. 27

Touché open 11 am – 5 am

Leather Eyeopeners 11am – 1pm Complimentary coffee & continental breakfast at Touché, provided by The Kitchen Sink, 1107 W. Berwyn.www.kitchensinkcafe.com
MCL2018 Registration noon – 4pm Weekend package pick up, sales of individual tickets & merchandise
Fetish Flea Market noon – 4pm Buy-sell-trade leather-rubber-uniforms-boots-gear
Kink U 1 – 4 pm Presented by Titans of the Midwest in Club Room

1-2pm: slave amendah- Bottoms Up: Impact Play!

inkedKenny exhibition at LA&M starts Jan. 26

CHICAGO — An exhibition of works by photographer inkedKenny opens on Friday, Jan. 26, in the Guest Artist Gallery at the Leather Archives & Museum.

The Archives said in a press release that an opening reception for the exhibition is Jan. 26, from 7 to 9 p.m. Admission for the reception is free, but 21 and over only. refreshments will be served. inkedKenny will be in attendance to talk about his photography and what inspired many of his black-and-white and color images included in the show. Refreshments will be served.

Illinois Leather Alliance announces judges, new contest

CHICAGO — The Illinois Leather Alliance, producer of the Illinois LeatherSir, Leatherboy, Ms. Leather Pride, Handler, and Pup contests, has announced their judges for 2018 and a new contest for the roster. The judges for this year are:

Mufasa Ali, ONYX Founder and Mr World Leather 2006-07
Ms Simone, Illinois Ms. Leather Pride 2008 and International Ms. Olympus Leather 2009
Dan the Rubberman, Midwest Rubber 2006
Tom Wray, Founder and Editor of the Great Lakes Den and Illinois Eagle
Pup Havok, TriState Puppy 2017

The ILA has also added the Illinois Person of Leather title to their contest weekend. This follows Great Lakes Leather Alliance, which ILA feeds into, adding a Great Lakes Person of Leather contest. “Many of our titles are very specific in their requirements based on gender, sexuality or relationship mode.” said Michael Shorten, executive producer of ILA, in a press release. “We have been looking for an opportunity to give to leather folks in our community who may not fit those specific titles, but feel called to be a titleholder.”

The Illinois Person of Leather contest is open to anyone of the leather community, no matter gender, gender identity or sexual orientation.

Full Kit Gear to stay open after Man’s Country sale

CHICAGO — Full Kit Gear, one of Chicago’s three leather stores, said Friday that they will remain open after the Man’s Country bathhouse closes. Full Kit has had a storefront in the building in the city’s Andersonville neighborhood since it’s opening in 2015. The bathhouse will be closing after a final part on Dec. 31, 2017. From Full Kit’s announcement on Facebook:
With the announced closure of Man’s Country and the pending sale of the two buildings at 5015-5023 N Clark Street, there have been many rumors regarding the future of Full Kit Gear.