February 26-March 4, 2015

Thu. February 26, 2015 12:00 AM
by Sukie de la Croix

Gay life in Chicago this week, back in ...


In the bars and clubs, buy your cheap after-work drink at $1.25 or less at Dingbats, 247 E. Ontario; Scorpie's, 6301 S. Harlem Ave., is open until 4 a.m.; ATTENTION LADIES for the hottest new experience in a woman's bar, enjoy Minkees, 3019 N. Clark St.; Beth Kaplan entertains at His 'n' Hers, 944 W. Addison; Loading Zone, 46 E. Oak St. celebrates Mardi Gras; and Tarts on Parade at BJ's, 3231 N. Clark St., features Ava Cato, Mysterious Marilyn, Michael K, Hedda Lettuce, Tracy Ames and Sunny Richards.


IMAGE: Dr. Popper – Gay Life January 12, 1979

The Lionheart gay theater company presents "Lady of the Rainbow Sheets" by Charlotte Versagi at the Theater Building, 1225 W. Belmont, as a benefit for Gay Horizons.


Article in Gay Life under headline "Rapists claim 4th, maybe 5th victim" begins:

"A 21 year old waiter on Feb. 21 became the fourth reported male victim on Chicago's Near North side since December when he was struck over the head and dragged into a van parked on Division Street between Dearborn and Clark streets. But when the terrified waiter broke into an epileptic seizure, he says his assailants dumped him into an empty lot near the Carl Sandburg Village apartment towers on Clark Street. Peter told Gay Life that he left a non-gay disco and was walking west on Division when he heard someone behind him yell 'faggot' and other anti-gay remarks. As he turned around he was struck over the head, knocked out, and dragged into a nearby van. One man drove the van while two others restrained Peter, he said. The assailants tore Peter's clothing, removed his belt, and tightened it around his neck. 'They said they were going to show me what it was like to be a real man,' he recalled. At that point, Peter says he went into a seizure, which he believes is the 'only reason I didn't get raped.' ...The Feb. 21 incident follows three others previously reported in Gay Life during January. All four have occurred within a 12-square-block area bounded by Division on the north, Erie street on the south, Dearborn on the east, and Clark on the west."


The top sellers at People Like Us Bookstore, 3321 N. Clark St. are:

Men's Erotica: 1) "The Leatherman's Handbook 2" – Larry Townsend; 2) "The Movie Buff Checklist" by Marvin Jones; 3) "Raunch" by Boyd McDonald; 4) "Meatmen Volume 11" – Etd. by Winston Leyland; 5) "Young Numbers" – by Leland Publications.

Women's Erotica: 1) "Susie Sexpert's Lesbian Sex World" by Susie Bright; 2) "Alarming Heart" by Reggie Sands; 3) "More Serious Pleasure" – by the Sheba Collective; 4) "Pleasures" – by Robbi Sommers; 5) "Travels with Diana Hunter" by Regine Sands.


IMAGE: Cover – Gay Chicago October 9, 1980

Ad in Gay Chicago reads:

"Television for Us, GCN now in Chicago. Gay U.S.A., Thursdays at 10 p.m. on Chicago Cable Channel 53. Hard hitting news and features from across the U.S.A. THIS WEEK:

"Gay Cable Network goes to the New Hampshire primaries and finds out just where do the presidential candidates stand on Lesbian and Gay Issues.

"ACT UP delivers their own special message to the presidential candidates in Manchester, New Hampshire.

"Queer Nation, Chicago updates us on the Cracker Barrel controversy."


IMAGE: Sidetrack – Gay Chicago January 4, 1996

In Gay Chicago, an article by Marie Kuda begins:

"As we begin the second decade of this country's official AIDS awareness, the plethora of statistics have some journalists claiming a second epidemic. As a nation, we tend to be more than a little homophobic, racist, and misogynist. Early reporting of AIDS as a predominantly white, male homosexual 'disease' is being replaced in this second decade by disproportionate numbers of new cases among minorities and an absolutely explosive rise in the number of cases among women."


The Chicago Athletic Association, 12 S. Michigan Ave., is transformed into a casino atmosphere, as the Friends of Stop AIDS Chicago present the second annual "Big Deal," a gala fundraiser featuring gambling, dancing, dining, stellar entertainment and prizes to benefit Chicago's foremost AIDS/HIV prevention educational outreach program.


Chicago Gay Men's Chorus and Vortex presents Mardi Gras, an annual fundraiser, at Vortex, 3631 N. Halsted.


WTTW channel 11 PBS presents "Out of the Past," a documentary tracing the historical emergence of lesbians and gay men in the U.S., seen through the eyes of Utah teen activist Kelli Peterson, who tried to build a Gay-Straight Alliance at her school in 1996.


IMAGE: "Kiss of the Spider Woman" – Gay Chicago January 19, 1996

Mary Morten and David E. Springer, two Chicagoans on the national board of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, co-host a reception at Sidetrack, 3349 N. Halsted. A $35 cover includes a year's membership to GLAAD.


The Lesbian Community Cancer Project holistic Stop Smoking Group meets at 4753 N. Broadway, suite 602.


Auditions for Lair Scott's Stardust, a David Bowie Tribute Band, take place at the Big Horse Lounge, 1558 N. Milwaukee.


The Radical Fairies of Chicago present their March Hare's Feast of Fools Cabaret at Big Chicks. Fausto Fernos hosts an evening of music, dance, poetry, witchcraft, communism and all-round anti-sociality, with Jennifer Trowbridge, Selene Carter, Marianne Buchwald, and more.


Is Lair Scott's Stardust still around?

Isn't Scorpie's still there under another name?

Did anyone ever go to Minkees?

Gay Chicago Photo Rewind

Sherman Heinrich photographs accordion player Roberta Rubenson at Berlin nightclub for Gay Chicago March 21, 1985.

A dancer at Cheeks "displays what today's well-dressed male dancer wears" in Gay Chicago News January 27, 1978.

St. Sukie de la Croix photographs sing with a vampire night at Bobby Love's and Margaret Cho at Women and Children First in Nightlines May 2, 2001

Jason Smith photographs "Pride on the Rocks" for Windy City Times July 2, 1998

Thanks go to publishers Michael Bergeron for Chicago Gay Crusader, Ralph and Craig Gernhardt for Gay Chicago, Grant Ford and Chuck Renslow for Gay Life,Malone Sizelove for Babble/Gab, David Costanza and others for Chicago Free Press, Jeff McCourt for Windy City Times, Stacy Bridges and Mark Nagel for GRAB, and Tracy Baim for all the publications at the Windy City Media Group, which aided the above research. St. Sukie de la Croix is an internationally published reporter, playwright, photographer and historian. He is also the author of Chicago Whispers: A History of LGBT Chicago Before Stonewall published by the University of Wisconsin Press.