Gay life in Chicago this week, back in... 1985, 2001 and 2005

Thu. August 15, 2019 12:00 AM
by Sukie de la Croix

(August 15-21, 2019)

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


THE FEAR OF AIDS: A SECOND EPIDEMIC, an article by Bob Greene in the Chicago Tribune begins:

"With cases of AIDS becoming more widespread every week, the United States is undergoing a second, related epidemic – fear of AIDS.

"Anyplace where people gather – especially people in their 20s, 30s and 40s – AIDS is one of the primary topics of conversation. The time is long gone when AIDS was only a homosexual concern. Now heterosexuals are openly expressing their deep fears about AIDS, and are wondering aloud just how long it will be until AIDS is out of control among the heterosexual population.

"Public health officials have a name for these people: "the worried well." They do not use that term smirkingly; they realize that people are waking up to the dark possibilities that AIDS presents, and are struggling to figure out how to protect themselves. Fear of AIDS is becoming a syndrome in itself--a syndrome that physicians, psychiatrists and psychologists around the country are beginning to notice.


IMAGE: Little Jim's – Gay Chicago August 13, 1987

In the clubs and bars, draft beer at 50c and free hot dogs every Sunday at the Gold Coast, 5025 N. Clark St.; there's a new menu at Crazy Mary's Café at the Bulldog Road, 2914/2916 N. Broadway; Marc Wade entertains at the piano at Gentry of Chicago, 712 N. Rush St.; the piano lounge is open every Wednesday at Showcase One, 959 W. Belmont; DJ Mark Vallese is at the Trianon, 3150 N. Halsted; every Thursday is Trivia Night at Teddies, 3160 N. Clark St.; Micki Zone sings Gene Pitney at Berlin, 954 W. Belmont; Company, 2683 N. Halsted, presents "Back to School Party" with Weeze, the principal bartender.


The 10th Annual Mr. Windy City 1985 contest takes place at Park West, 322 W. Armitage.


An obituary in Windy City Times begins:

"After a lengthy battle with HIV related illnesses, Steve 'Thor' Mason passed away at his home Aug. 2 with his partner of 18 years at his side.

"Steve was a native of Chicago, born on the North Side, and he spent his youth growing up in the Elgin area. After studying cosmetology, Steve worked as a hairstylist in Dundee before moving into the city. In addition to cutting hair at various salons, Steve also worked as a doorman and/or bartender at the Bushes, Carol's Speakeasy and Cell Block before his health required him to retire five years ago."


Achy Obejas reads from her new novel "Days of Awe" at Barnes and Noble, 1441 W. Webster.


IMAGE: Crystal Waters – Babble June 21, 1995

From The Grapevine in Windy City Times:

"I didn't become an actor to play a gay guy the rest of my life. I became an actor to play many roles. I look forward to the challenge of showing people that I can do other things." – Sean Hayes, Jack on "Will & Grace."


"The Republicans have adopted a new strategy in attacking gay and lesbian Americans. It's long been clear that there will be no progress at the federal level in advancing policies to protect GLBT people from prejudice as long as Republicans have control, but what the Boy Scout and faith-based measures show us is that there is a new right-wing assault, supported by the Bush Administration, to undermine state and local efforts at ending anti-gay discrimination." – Gay U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass.


Ripley Caine performs at Starbucks, 4553 N. Lincoln.


In Off the Cuffs in Nightlines, Tracy Baim writes:

"Ladyfest Midwest Chicago is a festival showcasing the work of women artists, performers, musicians, filmmakers, and activists. Concerts, workshops, readings and more are Aug. 16-19. Confirmed acts include Amy Ray, The Butchies, Le Tigre, Big Smith, Doria Roberts, DJ MINX, ESG, Hissyfits, KIM, Mystic, Occasional Detroit, Sonida Ink, Sur la Mer, Thug Murder, Trixie Delicious and the Lott Lizards, and Niki Mitchell. Open to all people regardless of age, race, or gender, the majority of events are happening in the Wicker Park, Logan Square and Humboldt Park areas along Milwaukee Avenue."


Fundraiser for Canada/U.S. AIDS Vaccine Rider Edward Brinkman features a short video presentation, free food, and entertainment by Ms. Lilly, and Ms. Paul Sinclaire, at Rehab cocktail lounge, 3641 N. Halsted.


IMAGE: Cover – Gay Chicago August 13, 1987

Hearts Foundation presents Hearts in Transit 2, a tea dance with DJs Mark Vallese and Neil Lewis with proceeds to benefit Hearts Foundation's Take Pride in Yourself program for AIDS prevention and personal health responsibility. Takes place at Transit, 1431 W. Lake.


Windy City Radio debuts Aug. 19. Join Amy Metheny, David Cottrell, Mary Morten, Gregg Shapiro and many more 10:30 p.m. 'til midnight, WCKG, 105.9 FM


An article in Gay Chicago begins:

"Gerber/Hart Library is holding a "Summer Dreamboat Date Auction" for both men and women on Saturday, Aug. 20, at 8 p.m. Comedienne Jessica Halem, along with a few surprises from Hysterical Women, will auction the women at Star Gaze, 5419 N. Clark. Madrigal's, 5316 N. Clark, will host the men's festivities. Brad Tucker will be the auctioneer."


Who remembers Rehab?

What happened to Windy City Radio?

What's Ripley Caine up to these days?

Gay Chicago Photo Rewind

Jack Sitar photographs a Mr. Windy City contest for Gay Chicago August 13, 1987

Jack Sitar and Linda Henderson took these photographs at Hunter's and Club LaRay

for Gay Chicago August 13, 1987

Terry Gaskins photographs at the Lucky Horseshoe Lounge for Gay Chicago January

4, 1987

Heart Foundation raises $13, 075 in Outlines August 6, 1987

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.