They Call Me MISTER Rawhide!

Pic 1:Preacher Cassadine (Mr. Eagle NYC 2010) & Emcee Will Clark
Pic 2: Will Clark and Mr. Rawhide Founder/Organizer Justin John Castillo
Pic 3: Go-go boy Ray Daniels
Pic 4: The Contestants, good from all sides!
Pic 5: Contestant Colin and friend Greg
Pic 6: Colin & Will
Pic 7: The Contestants: Jason, Ryan, Colin, & Paul
Pic 8: Jason, Ryan, Paul, & Colin
Pic 9: The Judges
Pic 10: Contestants Jason & Ryan
Pic 11 and 12: The Contestants: Jason, Ryan, Colin, & Paul
Pic 13: Ray Daniels
Pic 14: Jason & Will
Pic 15: The Contestants
Pic 16: Ryan 
Pic 17: The newly crowned Mr. Rawhide 2010: Ryan Moller
They Call Me MISTER Rawhide!

Call it “Saturday Night Raw”.  The leather/Levi bar known as Rawhide, with its infamous “one-way windows”, is one of the Gay Apple’s most established (Never say “oldest”!) watering holes.  The weekend of March 12-13, however, saw the premiere of a new event: the very first Mr. Rawhide Compeition. When the contest was first announced a while back, one bitchy observer commented, “They don’t even have a stage!”  True dat… but never underestimate the power of a big black box.  Despite Saturday the 13th being the wettest, windiest night in New York City in recent memory, and starting at the non-gay friendly time of 5PM, the tiny bar was jam-packed for the leather-clad event.  As one of the organizers implied, hot guys rubbing against each other in a crowded space is never a bad thing.  True dat, again.  The event opened with event Founder/Organizer Justin John Costello leading a moment of silence for members of our community who are no longer with us.  We then got to meet our Emcee for the night, well-known man-about-town Will Clark.  No stranger to winning a title himself (Northeast Mr. Drummer 1997/98), Will introduced our four contestants: Jason, Ryan, Colin, and Paul.  Aside from all of them being very masculine (and, shall we say, “easy-on-the-eyes”), the four could not have been any more diverse in terms of their looks and their lifestyles: a professional rodeo star/bodybuilder versus a Broadway costume designer… a member of New York’s leading GLBT cheerleading team versus an animal lover who implied that his ideal shopping spree would be at… Petco! (What would PETA say about a guy who loves animals but is entering a leather contest?  Hmmm…).  Competing for one of the most envied sack o’ prizes in town (Talk about great packages!…), the guys got to show off their tattoos for the audience, were quizzed about the hankie code, and then got to pose for the crowd in three different “looks”, including jockstap and formal leatherwear.  They also got to speak to the audience about what unity and the community meant to them, allowing us to “get to know” the men. (As well as allowing us to hear contestant Colin’s voice– enough to melt the biggest, burliest leather top into submission). The Judges were: Darrell Perry, of Darrell’s Dungeon; Grant Anderson, former President of GMSMA; CirrTone, of Onyx NYC and The LeatherMan, Inc; Master Tip, President of Iron Guard MC and MAsT NY; Kip Hollar, Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather 2009; Morgaine, Ms. New Jersey Leather 2010; and Special Guest Judge, XXX film star/uber-promoter Mike Dreyden.  Tallying the scores were Spanky, Mr. New Jersey Leather 2008; and Damian, Mr. New Jersey Leather 2010.  Darrell Perry, who was Head Judge, stated, “We’re really proud of the diversity that we have. It’s a small group– only four– but they have a wide range of experience and commitment to the community. We’re actually very excited about serving tonight.  The guys are in a venue where they can talk about what their heart is about, where they can let their freak flag fly… So, they’re doin’ it!  We want someone who really represents the community and represents the bar on some level, but we want to continue the leather legacy for the next generation.  We do that through image and through ideas.”  Judge Master Tip added, “All the contestants have heart.  We’re looking for the one that has the LEATHER heart.”   Yes, there was a few audio glitches throughout the night, but sadly, no “wardrobe malfunctions”. (Like the sight of an exposed pierced nipple would have caused a fuss anyway; For this contest, the more skin shown, the better!).  As for a “half time show”, who needed live music when the entertainment included music by DJ Delroy (The “Take Your Shirt Off!” remixes…) and go-go boy Ray Daniels, who was very nicely hairy in all the right places–.love that “welcome mat!”  And oh, the audience!  There were more titles that night than the average gay man’s porn collection. Seen: Robert Valin, Mr. Eagle NYC 2005; Fred Little (Mr. Lure 2000); Preacher Cassadine (Mr. Eagle NYC 2010); and many others.
Colin was named First Runner Up, and Ryan Moller was crowned Mr. Rawhide 2010.  I guess you just can’t go wrong with skintight pale yellow rubber pants that protect the property but display the goods so well.   Ryan now serves double duty as Mr. Rawhide and Mr. Woof.  During his title year, Ryan will represent the bar and his local leather community through events, fundraising, and charitable action. He will move on to show his raw talent in The International Mr. Leather Competition in January 2011.



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