Compiled by Dave Rhodes, Dr. Larry and William Burden
It is no secret that there were 71 International Mr. Leather 2018 or IML 40 contestants - your preference - 19 of them came from outside the United States, it is known that significant changes were being made in the International Mr. Bootblack contest and that IML founder Chuck Renslow would be remembered with class. What was to-be-determined was the winners of the contests.
Tim Starkey, AKA "Tim Bootblack," passed away on November 9, 2013 at UMass Memorial Medical Center after a complicated course of illness and long hospitalization. He was 50 years old.
Tim was a dual titleholder, and he took both jobs very seriously. A native of Worcester, MA, he won the title of Mr. Boston Leather 2009. On May 30, 2010 at IML in Chicago, he went on to win International Mr. Bootblack 2010.
Tim was a member of Mama's Family, "Mama's Boot Masseur," Delta International, and New England Leather Alliance. Through his years of service in the Leather world, he received a FLAG (Fits Like a Glove) Community Service Award and the 2009 Toronto Leather Impact Award. He was also nominated for a Pantheon of Leather Award.
A dedicated Leatherman and BDSM activist, Tim traveled all over the U.S. and Canada to spend time with his Leather and Kink brothers and sisters. He could often be seen leading bootblacking classes or roundtable discussions, volunteering, or just having fun. Among his favorite hangout spots were P-Town, New York City, and of course, the Boston Ramrod.
On Saturday, June 23 the Los Angeles Leather Coalition (LALC) celebrated its 15th Annual Southland Honors at Taix French Restaurant in Echo Park, CA. The awards and recipients are: Business/Business Person - The Leather Journal, Next Generation Award – Taz Efeek, Mentor of the Year – Sir Frank Cavallo, Cultural Arts Award – Francisco Perales, Nasty Puerquito Photography, LALC Chairman's Award – Dennis Beisbier, Community Choice Woman – Cypher, Community Choice Man – Ben Kaufher, Olga Perez-Stable Legacy Award - Olga Perez-Stable, Co-founder of Desire, Jeff Burnam Community Service Award – Romaldo Mancilla, Club/Organization of the Year – AVATAR los angeles, Event of the Year – AVATAR LA 35th Anniversary and Erotic Art Fair and George Wong Person of the Year – Ralph Bruneau.
ILSLb ICBB winners from 2016 and 2017. Photos by Dave Rhodes
The International Leather Sir 2017 sash, patch and medal went to Major Ty from the Florida Region, International Leatherboy 2017 hardware went to boy Kaz from the Great Lakes Region and the International Community Bootblack version was won by boy John Urso from the Atlantic States Region at the DoubleTree Hilton near the Galleria on Saturday night, September 2 in front of about 200 cheering spectators.
The contests were emceed by Pantheon of Leather Man of the Year Thib Guicherd-Callin the weekend of August 31 - September 3.
ILSLb judges were Dr. Larry, MarKus Leath, Master Olivier Pratt, Sir Don, Sir Tug, Cowboi Jen, boy Dan and Tim ASH!. The ICBB judges were Briar, Cobi, Pony, Rylee Spire, Shahrazad, Sir Greg and Stephen Palaschak.
Leather Sir runner-up was Sir Mitch of the Great Lakes Region, Leatherboy runner-up was boy Michael May of the Southwest Region and the Community Bootblack runner-up was Garret Rodriguez-Snook of the Southwest Region.
The Golden Flogger winner was Sir Robert of Eastern Canada, Golden Paddle winner was Pup Napoleon from the Florida Region and the Golden Brush winner was Garret Rodriguez-Snook from the Southwest Region. The recipients of these honors were decided by the 16 contestants.
The Pantheon of Leather Awards ceremony was on Thursday night with Thib Guicherd Callin taking. Man of the Year honor while Woman of the Year was Patty Patty. Christopher Edwards emceed while Texas Governor-to-be played the role of Vannah.
Contestants performed fantasies after the Awards and that was followed by a roast of the outgoing titleholders.
No rest for the wicked, contestants had to pry their eyes open very early on Friday for interviews.
Registration was in full force all day Friday and the vendor market opened with about double the amount of vendors from 2016. Wolfstryker Leather, which saw one of its artisans win Business Person of the Year on Thursday night, was new to ILSLb ICBB.
The weekend included a Family Welcome Cocktail Party, workshops, cigar socials by the pool, a Grand Casino night, daily activities, bootblack stands, puppy mosh pits and culminated with two nights of contests.
ILSLb ICBB President Jeffrey Payne announced that he is stepping down form the board since his run for the governorship of Texas will require his full attention. His replacement is yet to be named.
Many would-be attendees did not make it to Dallas due to Hurricane Harry. Many roads leading out of the Houston and New Orleans area were closed and it was anyone's guess as to which were open.
One of the defining characteristics of ILSLb ICBB is the up front philosophy that Leather Sir, Leatherboy and Community Bootblack are about sex. These contests and titles are about the representation of the sexual side of the Leather community. Our goals include networking and outreach to help educate the community about Leatherfolk, our erotic expression, traditions and history - and of course, hot Leather sex.
For more on the contests go to http://www.ilsb-icbb.com
To see who received Pantheon of Leather Awards see https://www.theleatherjournal.com/news/national-news/item/1953-pantheon-of-leather-2017-award-recipients
Beyond Vanilla will be held September 26-28 in Dallas, Texas, celebrating almost a quarter of a century on fun in the Lone Star State. Hotel Rooms are going fast at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Downtown Dallas. Reserve yours in the Beyond Vanilla block to get the lowest rate. In addition to discounts in overnight parking.
The fun begins Thursday evening at 6 PM at The Dallas Eagle for the Beyond Vanilla Kick-Off. A complimentary shuttle bus will be running to and from the Crowne Plaza and The Dallas Eagle from 5:30 PM to 2 AM. Early Check-In will be available at The Eagle so you can avoid the lines on Friday.
Friday registration opens at 10 AM, with Vending, and Silent Auction opening at 12:30 PM. Workshops run from 1-6:30 PM. The night's entertainment starts at 7 PM.
Saturday will pry eyes open at at 8:30 AM when Vending, and Silent Auction opens. Workshops start at 9 AM and run all day with a break for lunch.
On November 2 The Threshold Society will present its annual Bizarre Bazaar. In addition to numerous vendors, there will be sampler booths, food, and entertainment.
This event is open to the entire community, with the doors opening at 1 PM and the fun winding down at 7 PM. Admission is $10. There will be vendors from around the country and locally who will be selling some of the finest and most interesting wares in town. Here is an opportunity to handle and size those "special" items for which one has been looking.
The sampler booths will give Leather/BDSM/Fetish/Gearfolk a chance to try some activities they may only have been fantasizing about. Try out the violet wand, or a flogger, or a needle or two. What does a cane feel like? Here is a chance to get a small taste in a safe and fun atmosphere.
Join Threshold on the night of November 1 for the club's version of Dia De Los Muertos, Day of the Dead, play party. It is the night the "spirits," so get closest to the land of the living and celebrate the night away. This party is open to the community and admission is $20.
The Mr. San Diego Eagle 2014 contest will be bigger than ever. “It will be a 4-day event for the entire Leather community,” says Robb Rodriguez the current Mr. San Diego Eagle. The event runs from February 20 to 23.
The main contest activities will be moved from the San Diego Eagle bar to the nearby Sunset Temple auditorium. “We’re moving the venue of the contest to the Sunset Temple because we’re expecting a large crowd to attend. Already we’ve heard from people from as far away as Phoenix that they’re going to attend. And one of our judges is from Minnesota while another is from Georgia.”
The seven judges are an all-star group of titleholders. The head judge will be International Mr. Leather Andy Cross. Other judges are: American Leatherman Aaron Duke, Mr. International Deaf Leather boy Richard, Mr. San Diego Leather2013/Mr. San Diego Eagle 2012 Eli Correa, Ms San Diego Leather 2013 Colt Everyday, Eagle LA Mr. Leather 2013 Bill Robertroy and Mr. Minneapolis Eagle 2013 Ryan Brown.
MIR 22 - The Art Of Rubber
11 men vied for the Mr. International Rubber 2019 title on Saturday, November 11 and Guillaume Dupuis emerged victorious. First runner-up was Nico Watson and second runner-up was Rubber Fenix. Guillaume lives in Guillaume Dupuis, Canada. Kylon Hooks served as an entertaining emcee. Mr. International Rubber 22 was chock full of activities including the Mr. International Rubber Contest, Kink Market and Social, Rubber Pup Rumpus, Gear Sale, Demo Pit, Rubber Club Summit, Lubed-up Latex Wrestling and Kink Education. See their web site for a huge gallery.
CLAW Hotel Rooms Going Fast
The Westin is fully booked and the other three CLAW hotels are more than 50-percent sold. The other hotels are the Hampton Inn, Aloft Cleveland and the Marriott at Key Tower. Room rates start at $134/night for single and double occupancy ($139 for triple and quadruple occupancy) and include $20-$40/day in breakfast vouchers. CLAW Packages include more than 209 different events and exhibitors and the best cigar deck in all of Leather. CLAW XIX is April 25-28 in downtown Cleveland. CLAW is a convention that many consider the best Leather event of the year.
Avatar's 35th Anniversary Celebration and Exposition
By Tommy Trafelet
Avatar Club los angeles will present an exhibition of erotic art at Highways Performance Space on February 17. A celebratory gala will be hosted by International Mr. Leather 2017 Ralph Bruneau, featuring his live performances. A new metal sculpture by Wim Griffith is available as a commemorative for the occasion. On display will be exclusive erotic art from noted artists Wim Griffith, Drubskin, Dean Cameron, Turk McNanty, B.B., Leo Garcia, Don Tingling, Joe Rodriguez and Michael Kirwan, and pieces never seen before. Two no-host bars, a silent auction, and Master of Ceremonies International Mister Leather Ralph Bruneau! Special dinner catered by Layne Sanden and special guest chefs. Tickets for the gala are $40 and all information is available at http://www.avatarla.org/35
The Second Annual San Francisco Sober Leather contests are moving to a larger and kinkier venue this year, the San Francisco Citadel, located at 181 Eddy Street between Taylor and Mason with the main event scheduled for Saturday, November 15 at 7 PM, followed by a play party beginning at 11 PM.
The party is a new addition, as are two events on the days preceding and following the contest: a meet and greet taking place Friday, November 14, and a victory brunch on November 16.
The contest has grown into three titles, all serving the broader objective of fostering sober leadership, outreach and expression within the kink community. The San Francisco Sober Kinkster is open to any individual who feels like they either don’t identify with the male or female gender model or that they shouldn’t have to choose a gender. The other two titles are Mr. San Francisco Sober Leather, which is a feeder into the Mr. San Francisco Leather 2015 contest, and Ms San Francisco Sober Leather 2015, which is a feeder into the Ms San Francisco Leather 2015 contest.
While all will take place simultaneously, each will have its own panel of three judges. The contests are open to individuals 21 and over residing within the Greater Bay Area and Sacramento. Applications for entry are available on the organization’s Facebook page, at https://www.facebook.com/SFSoberLeathercontest They are due by October 21.
The Folsom Street Fair on Sunday, September 29 was the crown jewel of San Francisco Leather Pride Week which ran from Sunday, September 22 through Sunday, September 29. The Fair was packed as usual, the weather was great although overcast in the early hours. The late wind that usually hits around 5 PM did not show up until 5:45 PM. It seemed that the mix of kinky people and vanilla leaned significantly more toward kinky, an upturn from the tend in recent years and something that was commented on favorably by several Leatherfolk who came from about 50 different countries on five continents.
ONYX: Southern California's Second Second Anniversary. Photo by Dave Rhodes
Welcome to Dave Rhodes' Hump Day - Wednesday, September 13, 2017
This column will appear here every Wednesday on TheLeatherJournal.com
ILSLb ICBB 2017 results
The International Leather Sir 2017, International Leatherboy 2017 and International Community Bootblack were held in Dallas, TX on Saturday night, September 2 in front of about 200 cheering spectators. The contests were emceed by Pantheon of Leather Man of the Year Thib Guicherd-Callin the weekend of August 31 - September 3. See photo below. See the results at https://www.theleatherjournal.com/news/international-news/item/1954-ilslb-icbb-winners-in-dallas
On the evening of Thursday, July 24, 2014, the Ottawa Leather/Kink/Pup communities were shocked to learn of the death of Mr. Leather Ottawa 2014 Jon Nizzi. "Nizzi," as he was affectionately called by his many friends, had been a driving force in the various communities since moving from Toronto in 2013. In November of 2013, Jon won the Mr. Leather Ottawa title and went on to compete in the International Mr. Leather contest in May 2014, where he placed in the top 20 of a field of 46.
As news of his death became known late Thursday night, messages of grief, tribute and condolence from friends across North America and in the international Leather community had begun to fill his Facebook profile.
“With a smile from knowing you and quite a few tears I’m headed to bed; glad that you’ll rest well brother. (Pats and scritches) We will make sure Loki’s taken care of,” wrote International Mr. Leather 2012 Woody Woodruff.
A poignant photo of the Leather Pride flag flying at half mast was posted by Ms Leather Toronto 2013 Youkali Youkali.
The Leather Leadership Conference 2014, to be held at the DoubleTree Hotel and the William Way Center in downtown Philadelphia April 11-13, has done an internal inventory of what it has offered, combined with conference feedback forms and with the results of their 2012 community survey, with the result of that inventory being the creation a new Do It Yourself (DIY) program that will debut in Philly with a new delivery system for that program.
LLC has been the offering leadership training for Leather/BDSM/Kink/Fetish and LGBT communities for nearly 18 years. During that time, several changes have taken place and there has been more acceptance for those in alternate lifestyles, including more positive media. The Internet has given endless opportunities for contact, communication, and networking. There are a multitude of groups, munches and events to attend; sometimes so many that one could go to at least one event a week or have to choose where to participate.