Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2017-03-22
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Champions Carry the Torch for Chicago Gay Games
2006-04-26

facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email

      More Photos


BY MARIE-JO PROULX

The much-anticipated Weekend of Champions, a double benefit for Gay Games VII, took place April 22-23 at Soldier Field's Cadillac Club. With its thousand attendees, the sold-out Saturday night gala dinner was a resounding success. Almost 500 people showed up for the Sunday morning Breakfast with Champions, where three panel discussions were scheduled. The unique two-day event brought together elite athletes, entertainers, Gay Games organizers, corporate sponsors, local leaders and members of Chicago's LGBT community. [ See photos this issue. ]

The Night of 100 Champions was hosted by Olympic gold medalist Greg Louganis and honored a long list of openly gay athletes, including former NFL players Esera Tuaolo, Roy Simmons and David Kopay. Many international gay athletes were also recognized for their sporting performances in their respective disciplines as well as for their influences as positive role-models. Among them were South African volleyball player Leigh-Ann Naidoo, Dutch sprinter Martje Hoekmeijer and German cyclist Petra Roessner.

U.S. Soccer Olympic team and national team star Saskia Webber, Olympic gold medal-winning swimmer Bruce Hayes, U.S. skeleton national team member Courtney Yamada and Andrea Zimbardi, former co-captain and star catcher of the University of Florida's women's softball team, also picked up awards. A number of teams were honored, including the Chicago Force pro women's football team and the Nubians, a women's softball team.

For their honest and fair portrayal of gay athletes and issues, sports writer/commentator Frank Deford of Sports Illustrated and NPR; and HBO's Real Sports with Bryant Gumbed were commended. From the latter, interviewer and tennis commentator Mary Carillo accepted the award she also received her own Champions honor. She said a few words about discrimination in sports, expressed her strong support for the Gay Games mission, and talked about the making of a long documentary on Billie Jean King, which is to air April 26 on HBO.

Dozens of national organizations and local businesses have proudly signed on as official sponsors of Gay Games VII. Among those, Kraft Foods and Harris Bank have been the target of boycott attempts by extreme right-wing groups. For their steadfast support in the face of public pressure, the two companies were warmly applauded. The Crystal Lake Rowing Club, which earlier this month battled intense opposition by residents who did not want their suburban municipality to host the rowing competition, was also honored and cheered by the appreciative crowd of diners.

Persons and groups who have made substantial financial contributions to Gay Games VII were recognized. Interpreting for both weekend events was offered by Deaf Communication by Innovation. They will also donate interpreter services during this July's competitions. An updated list of all corporate and individual donors is available at www.gaygameschicago.com

Community leaders Dick Uyvari and Joe La Pat presented a $75,000 donation to a scholarship fund that has been set up to assist participants with limited financial means. Uyvari and La Pat would like the money to help fund the South African women's soccer team. Three international athletes were invited to receive the symbolic check.

Mayor Richard M. Daley, a longtime supporter of equal rights for LGBT people and chair of the Gay Games VII Honorary Host Committee, was not able to attend. However, City Treasurer Judy Rice, who is co-chair of the Host Committee, was greeted enthusiastically when she reached the stage. State Reps. Ken Dunkin, Sara Feigenholtz and Larry McKeon, along with Alds. Tom Tunney and Helen Shiller, were named for their sustained efforts and legislative victories in the fight against discrimination based on sexual orientation and identity.

Gay Games founder Dr. Tom Waddell, who died of AIDS in 1987, was praised by Sara Waddell Lewinstein, a medal-winning lesbian athlete and mother of their daughter. Waddell Lewinstein is a Gay Games pioneer, civil-rights activist and AIDS educator. While she insisted that the vision and realization of the original Gay Games, held in San Francisco in 1982, were her husband's, she is widely considered a co-founder in her own right because of the relentless work she did on behalf of the fledgling gay sports movement.

Another posthumous award went to Mark Bingham, the rugby player killed in 9/11 on Flight 93; he was represented by his partner, Paul Holm.

The evening also consisted of a mix of entertainment featuring, among others, singer Billy Porter, actor Jason Graae, local talent Dylan Rice, footballer-turned-singer Esera Tuaolo, comic Poppy Champlin and singer Sharon McNight. A live painting performance by artist Thom Bierdz provided a large sports-themed creation, and was later sold as part of the live auction. Cruises and other vacation packages were won in a raffle. The show, nimbly produced by Jeffrey Ortmann and his team, including event chair Tarrinna Dykes, was a definite crowd-pleaser. While it set the bar high for future Gay Games VII events, laudatory word of mouth should ensure that Chicago's LGBT community and its allies will rise to the challenge.


facebook twitter pin it del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Iowa State Rep. Ralph Watts dismissive of question about his use of gay slur 2017-03-26
GayCo gets grabby in Love is Love is Love Handles 2017-03-26
BOOKS Roxane Gay returns to Chicago to talk about 'Difficult Women' 2017-03-22
World news: OutGames, Cuban award, gay Brazilian mayor marries 2017-03-14
World news: Gay Games, trans killings, Italian partner ruling 2017-03-07
Circumcision survey finds long-term harm says gay researcher 2017-03-02
Gay resident of Ottawa, Ill. killed in Feb. 28 tornado 2017-03-02
Windy City Gay Chorus, Windy City Treble Quire to perform Faure's Requiem 2017-03-02
Washington DC one of three finalists to host Gay Games XI in 2022 2017-03-01
Lake County board chair comes out as gay 2017-03-01
Illinois star wrestler comes out as gay 2017-03-01
GUIDE TO THE GAYS Primary Feb. 28, general election April 4 2017-02-22
Openly gay South Bend mayor seeks Democratic leadership post 2017-02-18
Chicago Gay Men's Chorus to honor girl groups in Lipstick & Lyrics: The Dragtones 2017-02-15
Pride Films and Plays presents Chris Pazdernik's gay music of Broadway 2017-02-13
Chicago Gay Men's Chorus Big Package Auction April 29 2017-02-07
THEATER REVIEW CNTRL+ALT+DELETE by GayCo 2017-02-07
NC must repeal HB2 or lose NCAA championship games through 2022, warns NC Sports Assn 2017-02-06
National roundup: Summit canceled, GLAAD nominees, gay Iranian detained 2017-02-01
World news: Aeromexico ad, Tom of Finland, OutGames poetry contest 2017-02-01
Federal judge who ruled on constitutional protections for gays dies 2017-02-01
National roundup: Trans immigrants, Rachel Tiven, Philly gayborhood report 2017-01-24
Gay man attacked in Edgewater 2017-01-22
GayCo to present Cntrl+Alt-Right+Delete 2017-01-17
VIEWS Kim Burrell shows how Black church abuses gay Christians 2017-01-11
National roundup: Kerry apology, gay mayor, NASA's high score 2017-01-10
VIEWS Pope Francis needs his gay priests 2017-01-04
Gay Games raising scholarship money for 2018 event 2016-12-28
World news: UN attempt, Taiwan items, gay British royal 2016-12-27
Gay couple removed after Ivanka Trump confrontation 2016-12-22
Gay marriage proposal at Chicago Bulls game, and he said, Yes! 2016-12-20
Objection dropped to openly gay Evanston mayoral candidate 2016-12-16
Vatican reaffirms ban on gay priests 2016-12-07
Right-wingers speak out against gay IHRC members 2016-12-07
Orland Park minister to headline 2017 'ex-gay' conference 2016-12-06
VEHICLE REVIEW 2017 Nissan Armada: really huge, really cozy and really gay 2016-11-30
Federal court rehears gay discrimination case 2016-11-30
Lambda Legal fights in federal court for math instructor fired for being gay 2016-11-30
LETTERS Making it better, Chicago Gay Men's Chorus calls for harmony 2016-11-30
World news: Trump's UK choice, Ukrainian Parliament, gay-dating app 2016-11-29
 



Copyright © 2017 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 

Sponsor


Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.