“Howdy Partners”— Just wanted to use a little rodeo lingo I picked up at the Labor Day weekend event that I attended, the MGRA. What a weekend it turned out to be! The weather was absolutely gorgeous—and so were the cowboys. The rodeo committee must have really appeased the weather gods, because both Saturday and Sunday were cool and crisp with no rain.
The weekend began Thursday with a welcoming show headlined by none other than our own fabulous Mandy Barbarell at Sidekicks Saloon. Yours truly decided to venture out on Friday night to try and lasso a stray cowpoke. I ran into the most fabulous rodeo participants from Minneapolis, three of the cutest cowboys in the tightest jeans, and partying animals they were, too. One of them, my favorite, is a bartender at the Eagle in Minneapolis. I really need to make a trek North just to catch his act again sometime.
A Marge Simpson impersonator was one of the contestants in the “wild drag race,” in which a contestant must ride a steer from point A to point B without losing their wig or their composure. Sharing the picture is a runaway, or should I say breakaway, bride who is also preparing to mount a steer (or perhaps her husband). The picture shown looks like just a commercial for Camp, but really, folks, I did not pose Billy with the paper. He actually was reading it during a lull in the activities. My sincere thanks to all those folks who helped to make this year’s rodeo a great success. It will be interesting to see what unfolds next year as the rodeo will probably have to move to the other side of the state line and perhaps an indoor arena! Stay tuned for more news as it develops.
Another event that was blessed by the weather gods took place the next weekend, Corroboree, a benefit for Save Inc. held on Friday evening, September 8th. This event took place at the Kansas City Zoo near the African exhibit. I really want to give Larry and Lewis, the event cochairs, and all the committee members credit for pulling off a wonderful evening. The food was absolutely fantastic this year, with vendors serving everything from Kansas City BBQ to seafood quiche. Corroboree provided a mechanical surf board for riding that reminded me of the bull ride at Gay Pride this year. After my chafing experience on the bull ride, I opted not to ride the wild surf, although Mark Anderson, the executive director of Save Inc. did manage to stay up on the board for at least two seconds (I counted)! Mark, I hope you didn’t discover new places to ache the next morning like I did after riding that %$#@! bull!
There were two events that occurred since the last issue that relate to AIDS Walk and the AIDS Bicycle Challenge. The first took place in the new Voo Doo Lounge at Harrah’s Casino on August 25th. All door receipts were donated to AIDS Walk and although the turnout was small, I understand that Harrah’s presented Mike and Josh with more than $1,000 as a result of the event. The bartenders kept all the crowd amused with their juggling prowess.
The second AIDS Walk event took place during Old Timers at Missie B’s on September 12th. Mike Lintecum. and Josh Strodtman, cochairs for AIDS Walk, presented Mike Burnes and Jan Allen with an award for their support of AIDS Walk every year. I can attest to that. Every year that I have been walking in AIDS Walk, Michael and Missie B’s have provided a home-cooked breakfast before the walk. Since I’ve been eating Michael’s home-cooked breakfast since the 70s when he owned a diner on Troost Ave. called Mike’s Kitchen, I am living proof that you can not just survive but thrive on Mike’s cooking (along with an assist from Bootsy and Rodney).
This month promises to be jam-packed with events to keep this old girl off the streets, or should I say on the streets? The first weekend in October will start out with a Street Blast in Westport on the evening of Saturday, September 30th, followed by Out in Westport on Sunday, October 1st. In talking with James Pryor. from the Community Center, I hear there will be many surprises in store at both events. Let me just let you know there’ll be a live performance by the Kansas City Divas from Bar Natasha, Cowboy Steve and Penny Oliver. I wonder if we can call on the weather gods just one more time for this important event for the LGBT community? Let’s all show our support by attending both Out Blast ‘06 and Out In Westport.
Hey gang, let’s go to the garage, dust off the old 10 speed, and high-tail it out to Mill Creek Streamway Trail in Shawnee Mission for the AIDS Bicycle Challenge on October 7th. The folks who have organized this event have made it really easy for everyone to register. Just log on to http://www.aidswalkkansascity.org/ride and you can even set up your own web page to receive pledges from your friends. I took the challenge last year when the route went along the Katy Trail and enjoyed the ride thoroughly—except the part where you have to mount the bike and make the wheels turn! This year I’m looking for an athletic youngster to ride with me and show me the ropes, so to speak!
Here again, I hope the rain gods are kind.

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Photo by Alonso Reyes on Unsplash

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