March 2, 2006
Leatherfolk from major cities such as Chicago, New York and Atlanta have many events that they can attend locally, and within a few hours’ drive or a quick flight they can be in other locales with major leather events such as Cleveland, Washington DC and Florida. Titleholders and leather activist there thus have the opportunity to be seen and widely known and that really helps when Pantheon of Leather judges read through bios to decide whom they would like to honor. Here in the desert, events elsewhere on the west coast are accessible but otherwise it’s an expensive and time-consuming trip to attend the cities and events mentioned above and not many people make it, so very few of our residents become nationally known and end up being honored by Pantheon.
Nevertheless, despite that disadvantage, one Palm Springs man was honored this year; the prestigious President’s Award was given to Edward Espindola for his superb fund-raising efforts. Over the last few years Edward has presented dozens of events raising funds for his favorite charities and he manages to cajole people to part with more money faster that anyone else I know. Who else do you know who could raise $21,000 in two hours at Toucans, of all places? But he did it and I was there and saw it happen. We are all proud that Edward was honored. His next event is called Camp Toucans (as if Toucans itself wasn’t camp enough!) and is a fund raiser for Camp Heartland, one of Edward’s favorites. So go to Toucans in your full leather and cause a stir! The event is on Thursday April 27th and begins at 8pm. My experience of going into twinkie bars in full leather is that it can produce some very interesting and unexpected offers from the most unlikely people. You might be surprised.
Another event to put on your calendar is "The heat Is On," the Southern California LeatherSIR and Leatherboy 2006 Regional Contest. International Leather Sir is a more S/M oriented title than International Mr. Leather and features erotic fantasies, which are not a part of IML. The regional contest is a preliminary for the National event later in the year.
The local preliminary, produced by Dale Breunig, International Sir 2002, will be held April 21-23 weekend at The Barracks Bar. The Meet and Greet will be held on Friday evening followed by the contest on Saturday night, with the on-stage Sexual Cruise Wear, Fantasy and the all favorite Jock Strap category. This year’s theme for the contestant fantasies will be "Headspace," which could actually describe the back rooms of some bars that I know!
This year’s regional preliminary is open and requires no pre-qualifying contest to enter. Contestant applications and qualifications are available by contacting IntlLeatherSIR02@aol.com and are also available at The Barracks Bar. Assisting as the hotel of choice will be Terrazzo resort on E. Palm Canyon.
I really hope we have some good contestants. Last year we had only two for the boy title and no one had the confidence to come forward to enter the Sir part of the contest, so all you leather tops out there – lets’ see you put your body where your mouth is.
One other event that I think you should make a point of attending will be presented by the Palm Springs boys of Leather. This is a leather fashion show at The Barracks on Friday April 14 at 10pm, as a fund raiser for the Desert AIDS Project, an excellent cause. As with Camp Toucans, there’ll be raffles, a silent auction and entertainment and the guest hosts are Edward Espindola (there he goes again!) and Snatch, Queen of the Desert, who’s a leather person under all that drag. Tuff Stuff Leather, Gear, Twist my Links (chain gear) and LeatherSmith will be among the businesses showing off their wares and the event is also supported by West Coast Rubber. It will be well worth seeing. Hope the models are hot and available.