IML 2015 Kicks Off in Chicago

The IML leather market on Friday at Chicago's Congress Plaza Hotel. (Photos by Ruff Wray)

The IML leather market on Friday at Chicago’s Congress Plaza Hotel. (Photos by Ruff Wray)

CHICAGO – International Mr. Leather 37 has started in Chicago at the Congress Plaza Hotel this week. This year, 52 men from across the world, including Ireland, Australia and South Africa, will be competing to succeed IML 36 Ramien Pierre.

People were arriving as early as Tuesday with some of the first parties on Wednesday. The semi-official start was on Thursday night, with the roast of Ramien and International Mr. Bootblack Scout at the Leather Archives and Museum. International Ms. Leather 2014 Patty was the roastmaster.

[flagallery gid=75]

IMBB 2013 Nick Elliot was the first of the roasters, for both Ramien and Scout. And he pulled out all the stops, making quips about all the recent controversies in the national community, which we won’t repeat here because we’d rather not get chased out of town. He was followed by IML 2014 second runner-up Steve Dupont, Dominion Onyx from DC, Scout’s partner Blaise and Patty. There was plenty of pie for Ramien, along with a detailed explanation of what kind of pies he likes.

The market and opening ceremonies were on Friday, with the Park West hosting the ceremonies. Saturday will have the market, Pecs & Personality and more parties.