Windy City Rodeo came riding back to Six Guns Ranch & Arena in Crete, Ill., Sat., Aug. 24 and Sun., Aug. 25, after a one-year hiatus. Illinois Gay Rodeo Association's (ILGRA) annual two-day event included all the standard rodeo events, plus a few you'd only find at the "gay rodeo," including goat dressing (where two contestants must put a pair of underwear on a goat for time) and wild drag (where men in dresses and wigs must mount a calf). Attendees were treated to a weekend filled with perfect weather, lots of sunshine, and an active dance tent which provided shade when the sun was too much.
This year's rodeo raised money for Test Positive Aware Network (TPAN). The three grand marshals were InnExile bartender and rodeo bar manager Ruben Nieves; Chuck Rodocker, owner of Touche leather bar; and Windy City Media Group art director and Nightspots editor Kirk Williamson. Touche manager David Boyer stood in for Rodocker at the event.
This year's annual Ceremony of the Riderless Horsea touching portion of the opening ceremonies honoring those who had passed in the past yearpaid tribute to Ann-Kirstine "Stina" Rogal, who taught two-stepping lessons at Charlie's for many years, and Michael "Mangina" Gabaldon, former bartender from Charlie's and Spin.
Text and photos by Kirk Williamson