ST. LOUIS – Gateway City native and Rolla resident Scott O’Brien took home the title of Mr. Missouri Leather 2012, March 3. Columbia’s Chris (Crisco) Schiefer and St. Louis’ Rick Hulvey were First and Second Runner Up, respectively.
The 29th Annual Contest was held March 2–4, with all events taking place at JJ's Clubhouse in St. Louis, Missouri. The event has been sponsored by Gateway Motorcycle Club since 1983 and is one of the longest running annual Leather contests in the country sponsored by a single club.
Contestants were judged in the categories of Interview, Cruise Wear, Physique & Personality, Formal Wear - as well as on delivery of a short speech to the crowd.
“Know yourself and know your status,” O’Brien told the capacity crowd during formal wear. “How many sexual partners do we have in a year? Your status in January is not your status in May nor your status in November. Get tested frequently.”
The destination event, which included title holders in attendance from across the country, kicked off on March 2 with a “Meet and Greet” for the contestants, judges and bootblack. The annual MML silent auction presented by Gateway MC and a used leather sale presented by Blue Max rounded out the evening. Proceeds from the silent auction and Blue Max's used leather sale benefited Doorways, an organization that provides housing for people living with HIV in the St. Louis area.
This year’s judging panel included: Tyler McCormick, International Mr. Leather 2010; Ben Carter, Mr. SouthEast Leather Sir 2012; DJ Kaiser, Mr. Missouri Leather 2011; Joey McDonald, International Mr. Leather Executive Board Member and Dave Rhodes, The Leather Journal publisher and editor. The emcees for MML were Mike Lunter, Mr. Missouri Leather 2009 and Terry Laupp, Mr. Missouri Leather 2010. Loki was the bootblack for the event.
The newly sashed Mr. Missouri Leather 2012 will receive a sponsorship to IML 2012, $100, a title sash and much more. Second place will receive $100, with Third place receiving $50.
Also held was the informal Gateway Guy contest, which has been a feature of the Mr. Missouri Leather contest to actively involve more people in the event and perhaps to encourage future contestants for Mr. Missouri Leather. Gateway Guy "Josh" took home this year's medal.
Prior to giving up his title, MML 2011 DJ Kaiser spoke movingly of his journey from overcoming childhood bullying, body issues and an abusive relationship to challenging himself to run for the title of Mr. Missouri Leather.
The weekend concludes tomorrow (Sunday) morning with the Mr. Missouri Leather Victory Brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. presented by Blue Max, cost for the brunch is $10.
Gateway MC was established in 1973. For a number of years, all the members had to have motorcycles, and most of the activities were cycle related. Eventually, like other such clubs around the country, Gateway developed into a men's social organization in which motorcycles were not the only focus. Activities broadened to encompass the Levi/Leather community as a whole and its need for its own identity, events and network of brotherhood.
STORY & PHOTOS BY: COLIN MURPHY - SENIOR WRITER
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