Friday, March 21, 2003

Mr. Mpls. Eagle Contest 2003

(Article published in Lavender Magazine, Issue #204, March 21, 2003)

If you thought of competing in this year’s Mr. Minneapolis Eagle contest but then decided not to, start kicking yourself (and also start making plans to enter next year’s contest). You missed a chance to be onstage with five great contestants, each of whom thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

The Minneapolis Eagle chose its representative for 2003 (and Minnesota’s representative at this year’s International Mr. Leather contest) on Sunday evening, March 2. Proudly sponsored by local chat line 1-800GAYLIVE, the contest crowded the bar to capacity with a lively, enthusiastic and supportive audience.

This year’s contest followed the same basic format as previous years. On Saturday afternoon the judges got their chance to privately interview each contestant. Then on Sunday night the contestants were introduced during the traditional “keg walk,” and were then judged in a question-and-answer segment. For the final competition category each contestant presented an 60-second erotic reading (quick but very effective).

Scoring for this year’s contest, like last year’s, was very close. Joe Alegrett, owner of Penetrations Piercings & Body Designs in Eau Claire, Wis. took second runner-up honors; Chris Boudewyns was first runner-up; and at the climax of the evening Mr. Minneapolis Eagle 2002 Wayne Butzer passed the title to his successor, Mr. Minneapolis Eagle 2003 Gregg White.

Minneapolis Eagle owner Ed Hopkins was very happy with the way the contest went: “It’s usually nerve-wracking leading up to the contest—it’s always a busy night at the bar and I’m usually paranoid about technical problems.” He was pleased, and somewhat relieved, that this year’s contest was “flawless—the contestants, the judges, the emcee [Brian Anderson, manager of The Minneapolis Eagle and The Bolt], and the crowd were all wonderful.”

The contestants felt the same way. Alegrett seemed pleased that “there was no competitive backstabbing. All the contestants seemed relaxed—I think we all thought that we might at least get a new friend out of the experience.” He had nothing but praise for his fellow contestants: “These guys were great! I couldn’t have asked for a better group of gentlemen to complete alongside.”

Contestant Ric Krohn also enjoyed the experience. “It was my first contest, it was a totally new experience, and it left me with a good feeling. I met people I’ve seen before but not had a chance to meet.” Krohn said his goal was “just to compete, to see what I could do.” What prompted him to enter? “I had thought about it since last year, and when we were in the bar a couple of weeks before the contest my friends encouraged me to enter.”

White summed up the contest by saying, “This was one of the few contests I’ve seen where no matter which of the contestants would have won, I would have been proud of our community. All the contestants were pleasant and encouraging to each other. And being on stage was awesome because the crowd was so supportive.”

As the new Mr. Minneapolis Eagle 2003, White will compete in this year’s 25th-anniversary edition of the International Mr. Leather (IML) Contest, which will be held in Chicago over Memorial Day weekend. (IML contest information is available at <www.imrl.com>.)

Leather Life’s Leather List

(Leather Life column published in Lavender Magazine, Issue #204, March 21, 2003)

You’ve asked for it. Now here it is, a comprehensive listing (from Atons to Yahoo®) of clubs, organizations, and ongoing/recurring leather/BDSM events for the Twin Cities and surrounding areas. Post it on your refrigerator door and you’ll always know what’s going on.

ATONS OF MINNEAPOLIS

Atons Leather & Levi (L&L) Dining Out is the second Saturday of the month, usually starting around 7PM and ending before 10PM. Leather attire encouraged. Where: A different restaurant every month; location announced on Atons Flashmail (see below) or <www.atons.net>. Average group size: 15-35. Might be smoke-free depending on where you sit. Reservations are usually required, call the Atons Hotline to RSVP.

Atons bar nights at the Tank, a beer bash/social night with surprises varying from month to month. When: Second Sunday of the month (through spring), 6-10 PM. Where: The Tank (Saloon). Average group size: 100-150. $5 at the door. FFI: <www.atons.net> or Atons HotLine.

Atons club meetings are monthly but variably scheduled. Prospective club members and interested members of the community are welcome to attend as guests. FFI: <www.atons.net> or Atons HotLine.

Register now for the Atons Campout, July 17-19.

BLACK GUARD OF MINNEAPOLIS

Black Guard fundraisers and bar events are not on a fixed schedule. The next one is a beer bust/chili feed that happens March 29, 6-9PM at The Minneapolis Eagle. FFI: <www.blackguardmpls.com>

Black Guard club meetings are generally the second Saturday of the month. Prospective club members and interested members of the community are welcome to attend as guests. FFI: <www.blackguardmpls.com>

Register now for Black Frost XVI, “Back to Basic Black,” April 4-6 in Minneapolis. Download registration form from <www.blackguardmpls.com/runap.htm>. Register before March 24 and save $20.

KNIGHTS OF LEATHER

Knights of Leather club meetings are the 5th of every month. All are welcome. FFI: <www.knightsofleather.org> or e-mail cpslovac@msn.com.

Register now for Tournament 15—Little Dungeon on the Prairie, June 6-8. FFI: <www.knightsofleather.org>.

What’s a Munch?

Various groups hold “munches” (usually monthly, sometimes quarterly) which are social events held in public places as opposed to dungeons—no play, but lots of conversation and camaraderie. Appropriate streetwear is always encouraged when arriving and departing.

MSDB (Minnesota Stocks, Debentures and Bonds)

MSDB Munch is the second Thursday of the month at 5:30 PM. Where: Kieran’s Irish Pub (non-smoking section—ask for MSDB), downtown Minneapolis at 2nd Ave. S. & 4th St. S. Free validated parking in the Mid-town Ramp across the street (enter ramp on Marquette Ave.) FFI: <www.msdb-mn.org>. Also see MSDB Rochester, MN munch listed below.

MSDB also presents workshops and seminars including quarterly First Aid/CPR training. See their website for details.

NORTH COUNTRY BEARS (Leather’s furry cousins)

Bear Bar Night: Fourth Friday of the month, 7-9 PM at Trikkx (490 N. Robert St., downtown St. Paul). $5 beer/soda bust, food available.

Bear Coffee: Every Wednesday, 7-9 PM at Dunn Bros. Uptown, Hennepin Ave. S. and 34th St. FFI: e-mail bakerbare@aol.com.

Bear Dinner: Every Wednesday, 9-11:30 PM at Chili’s, St. Louis Park (Xenia Ave. exit from 394; call Chili’s for directions).

Bear Camp: July 3-6 (register by June 15). About 120 bears playing in the woods. FFI: <www.ncbears.com>

TIES (Tremendously Intense Erotic Situations)

TIES Munch is usually the largest monthly munch in the area. When: Last Wednesday of the month, 7:30 PM to whenever. Where: Downstairs at “Da Moose” (Moose on Monroe), 356 Monroe St. NE, Minneapolis. Average group size: 100-200. FFI: <www.ties-bdsm.org> or e-mail ties@mn.rr.com.

TIES also holds specialized monthly discussion/support groups: TIES Dom/mes’ Domaine (for dominants), TIES Subspace (for submissives, bottoms or switches who primarily identify as subs or bottoms), and TIES Switching Post (for those who switch between dominant and submissive roles). More information is available at the TIES Munch.

WHIPSTERS

Single-tail whip enthusiast club that holds monthly practice sessions. All skill levels are welcome, from neophyte to expert. FFI: Attend the TIES munch and ask to speak to a Whipsters member.

SPECIALIZED MUNCHES

Kinky Youth Munch: A casual munch for those age 18-35 or so—“fun and social interaction for the next generation of kink.” When: First Sunday of the month. FFI: E-mail festivelywicked@yahoo.com for details.

Newbie Munch: For those new to kink, or familiar with the lifestyle but new to the area. This is a smaller, perhaps less intimidating munch that’s a safe and welcoming place to meet people and get your questions answered. Generally attended by a mix of newbies and veterans willing to share their experience and knowledge. When: Second Saturday of the month. Average group size: 10 to 25. FFI: E-mail allisonwondrland@yahoo.com.

BARS/NIGHTCLUBS

Minneapolis Eagle, 515 Washington Ave. S., Mpls. Dress code enforced Fridays and Saturdays after 9 PM.

The Tank (at The Saloon), 9th & Hennepin, Mpls. Sunday-night leather space.

Trikkx, 490 N. Robert St., St. Paul. Second Friday of the month.

Bondage a Go-Go: still go-going every Thursday and Saturday at 9 PM. Ground Zero, 15 NE 4th St., Mpls.

OTHER CITIES

Duluth

Leather/Levi Night at The Main Club is the last Saturday of the month. FFI: <www.angelfire.com/wi/mainclub>.

Northland Mini-Munch/Kinky Coffee is usually the first Saturday of the month. FFI: mstelena@aol.com.

Rochester

MSDB Rochester Munch is the fourth Thursday of the month, 7-10PM. Where: McMurphy’s Sports Cafe, 1201 Eastgate Dr. S.E. (near intersection of Hwy 14 and Marion Rd.) (Note: McMurphy’s does not accept out-of-town checks.)

Informal and sporadic gatherings (often unannounced) are held in St. Cloud, the Fargo/Moorhead area, and Mankato.

A few Wisconsin munches: Eau Claire (usually on a Saturday), Madison (second Saturday of the month, e-mail satyriconmadison@yahoo.com for details), Milwaukee (third Saturday of the month, 8 PM, e-mail milwaukeemunch@aol.com for details), Kenosh/Racine (first Sunday of the month, 6 PM, e-mail MushiSushi@aol.com for details).

And in Iowa, the Corn Haulers Leather & Levi Club in Des Moines have a bar night the first Saturday of the month at Blazing Saddles (details: <www.cornhaulers.com>). In Cedar Rapids, CROP (Cedar Rapids Organization of Perverts) holds a monthly munch (e-mail doc-jackson@mchsi.com for details).

ON-LINE RESOURCES

Atons Flashmail is a weekly e-mail message/calendar about events and information (and even the occasional want-ad) of interest to local leatherfolk. Both Atons and non-Atons events are covered. Sign up at <www.atons.net> or send an e-mail (with the words “subscribe flashmail” in the subject line) to flashservice@atons.net.

TIES-List is an e-mail listserv “for the Leather, B&D, D/S, S&M, and other kinky acronym people in the Twin City area” that is “pansexual, pro-freedom, and pro-sex.” Subscribe by sending an e-mail to Majordomo@orbis.net, with the following words in the body (not the subject line) of the message: “subscribe ties-list” followed by your e-mail address. (All subscribe requests must be approved by the list-owner, so please be patient.)

Yahoo Minnesota BDSM Club: E-mail listserv plus an event calendar at the group’s website. Group also has quarterly munches (various locations around Minnesota) and a summer barbeque, but the focus here is on discussion and networking rather than regular meetings. To subscribe send an e-mail to minnesotabdsmclub-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

www.leatherjourney.com: This “online resource for the Minnesota Leather Community” is just getting started but looks promising. Event calendar, news, links, forum, polls, and more. Information about leather/BDSM events worldwide can be found at www.theleatherjournal.com (most comprehensive calendar I know of, but no links in the calendar) and www.thebdsmeventspage.com (less comprehensive but the calendar includes links).

Corrections? Omissions? Please let me know.