Gay life in Chicago this week, back in... 1977, 1988 and 1994

Thu. October 31, 2019 12:00 AM
by Sukie de la Croix

(October 31 – November 6, 2019)?

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


A Metro Brief in Gay Chicago News reads:

"Alderman Edward Burke (14th), the city council's archfoe of pornography, has issued a warning against 'the latest fad on the rise in California's sin city,' small bottles of amyl or butyl nitrate, called 'poppers.'" Burke cited doctor's warnings that users might pay for their pleasure with severe headaches, vomiting or even cerebral hemorrhage."

Another reads:

"Crime syndicate efforts to muscle in on the city's pornography market were suspected in the bombing of the Morton Grove home of Harry Goodman, a partner in a Loop firm that distributes X-rated movies. No injuries were reported in the blast which caused about $2000 in damage to the home of Goodman, an owner of Apache Film Corp. Investigators suspected the bombing was a message from the Crime syndicate that it wants a cut of the pornography business."


IMAGE: Medusa – Gay Chicago October 7, 1982?

Gay AA meets at Augustan Hospital, 411 Dickens.


Gay Over Eaters meets at Augustan Hospital, 411 W. Dickens.


The Metropolitan Community Church presents "The Curious Savage," by the Shepherd Players at 615 W. Wellington Ave.


In his Gay Gourmet column in Gay Chicago, Rick Karlin writes:

"After a shaky start, Buddies has finally found its identity. The menu has been pared down to a reasonable number of items for the smallish kitchen and the focus has changed from glorified deli food that had little if nothing to do with southwestern décor to an imaginative, menu with a definite southwestern flair. Credit for this improvement must go to head chef Art Gibson, who along with the bar/café's manager Michael Shimandle, took a hodge-podge of fun ideas, cut out the fat, and ended up with one of the most imaginative, delicious, and reasonably priced menus that I have seen in a quite a while."


IMAGE: Kit Kat Lounge – Gay Chicago January 4, 1987?

An article in Gay Chicago begins:

"Members of the Chicago Area Republican Gay Organization (CARGO) unanimously endorsed George Bush for President at their October meeting. While acknowledging that Bush is not going to be an advocate on strictly gay issues, CARGO believes that his over-all record is excellent and infinitely superior to his opponent's."


Award-winning recording artists and electric mandolinist, Robin Flower, and vocalist and keyboard player Libby McLaren (formerly of the Roches, an all-female singing group noted for tight harmonies), appears at Mountain Moving Coffeehouse for Womyn and Children, 1655 W. School St.


In the bars and clubs, it's the White Castle Party at the Lucky Horseshoe Lounge, 3169 N. Halsted St.; watch "Absolutely Fabulous" every Monday at Roscoe's, 3354-56 N. Halsted; Tool presents Future Sex, a brief history of trade, at Cairo, 720 N. Wells St.; watch the Chicago Bears vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers on TV at North End, 3733 N. Halsted; learn line-dancing every Tuesday at Numbers, 6406 N. Clark St.; Jim Beam presents Country Caravan at Charlie's, 3726 N. Broadway; Deeks, 3401 N. Sheffield, celebrates three years of good fun and great friends.


IMAGE: Pride Tea Dance – Babble June 14, 1995?

Gay Chicago's Top Ten Playlist: 1) "Caught in Love" – Dawn Tallman; 2) "Getting' Lifted" – Barbara Tucker; 3) :In My House" – D.J. Dexter; 4) "Want You to Want Me Too" – James Faith; 5) "Stratosphere (EP)" – Stratosphere; 6) "Love is What we Need" – Dream Team; 7) "Can't U Feel It?" – Peak Hour Productions; 8) "Hot for You" – M.A.W. featuring Willie Ninja; 9) "Voices in My Mind (Remix)" – Voices; 10) "Souffle" – Mondo Grosso.


Quote in this month's Outlines reads: "You've all heard some rumors about me over the years. I think I should make a statement. My name is Richard Gere and I'm a lesbian" – Richard Gere.


"I'd like to think that people would not be so narrow-minded as to hold this against me. Besides, some of my best friends are straight." – Gay actor Dan Butler on playing straight sportscaster Bob "Bulldog" Briscoe on NBC's "Frasier."


"A number of my gay friends said ... 'The gay community's going to think you're gay if you do this.' And I said, 'Well, who gives a shit what anyone thinks anyway, to be quite honest.'" – Priscilla, Queen of the Desert co-star Guy Pierce, a soap opera star in Australia.


An article in Outlines by Karen Ocamb begins:

"The West Hollywood City Council on Oct. 17 voted to offer a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the murder of Chicago activist Jon Simmons. Later, Mayor Abbe Land said that figure may jump to $10,000 if they get Chicago's Mayor Richard Daley to add matching funds.

"While Daley's office issued a statement saying he was saddened to hear about the murder, the administration has yet to add to the reward money. Daley also said: 'Jon was a very well-liked and respected member of this administration. He was always a strong advocate for the gay and lesbian community, and he built a lot of bridges between the Daley administration and the gay and lesbian community."


IMAGE: Charmers – Windy City Times August 24, 1989?

An article in Outlines reads:

"After initially forbidding a female/female couple to buy tickets to a school dance, Oak Park River Forest High School has changed its policy, and will now sell tickets to individual students rather than couples. Students petitioned against the original Oct. 5 decision, but many said the couples-only rule should be maintained, with same-sex couples allowed to purchase tickets as well as male/female couples. In the Sun-Times call-in poll, 51 percent of respondents said they favored allowing same-sex couples to attend formal high school dances."


Is Khris Francis still around?

Did they ever find the killer of Jon Simmons?

Who remembers Deeks?

Gay Chicago Photo Rewind

Bar pictures published in February 11, 1977 Chicago Gay News

Ken Peterson photographs Barbara Gittings, Peggy Way, and Guy Warner for Gay Life April1 1977

Rich Pier photographs at Little Jim's for Gay Life April 1, 1977

Tom Coughlin photographs at the MCC/Good Shepherd Parish Church for Gay Life April 15, 1977

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.