I have worked many different jobs in my life in many different vocations. I have also volunteered for many charitable organizations both lifestyle and vanilla. I can honestly say that this is the first time I have ever felt this sad at the end of my time working for any organization.
I want others on staff as well as those who have presented at The Warehouse to know that the closing of The Warehouse is none of your faults. I watched each and every one of you work very hard to provide for the Grand Rapids BDSM Community. You all put in your own time and money to bring Grand Rapids its first true Dungeon Space & Community Center. I have never had the pleasure to work with such dedicated and caring individuals. I am absolutely devastated the way that things have turned out.
Though I am completely disheartened by the lack of support the Grand Rapids community has shown over all for the extremely hard work and money spent to give them a place to play, there are those of you who attended each and every event. I thank those of you who promoted The Warehouse as if it was your own personal endeavor as well as those who attended as many parties as possible to show your support. You treated The Warehouse as if it was your own, and that is what we wanted when we set forth to open a space. We wanted to give our community a space of its own that they could feel proud to be part of. I am happy to see that for a number of you we accomplished that much.
I ask that those of you who attend any events in the future, especially those that have an educational aspect, be aware of how much work goes into providing those events. Don’t just be aware but be thankful to the people who take their own free time to provide you a chance to learn and have fun. Be thankful to those who spend their own hard earned money making these things happen as well as those who are giving up time with their families to make sure you have someplace to go on the weekend.
It was quite an honor to be part of The Warehouse from the moment I proposed a location, through having to clean up two floods in the space, to taking the last pieces of furniture from the space. I can’t say it was always fun, but at the end of the day I was always proud of what we accomplished. I was most proud of our last event, where we finally seen a real diverse slice of our community. We had in attendance members off all these unneeded subsections of our community. For the first time since I have been part of the Grand Rapids BDSM community there were representatives from both the Swinger Community & Gay Leather Community under the same roof, two groups who seemed almost unwelcomed at events like this just a year before. Knowing that we provided an environment that was comfortable enough for you to join us makes me very proud. Bringing an end to this idea of separate subsections has been a goal of mine for the past three years, I can’t express how happy I was that night.
Before I close, I would like to thank our amazing line up of presenters that were kind enough to provide us with their knowledge. I’d like to thank Rowan, Aeshe, Bucky, Karida, Lady Elsa, Boi Kris, Jack Rinella, & Roughinamorato. I would also like to thank all those who pitched in for the Auction as well as those of you who provided demos for the Twisted Tapas at the LeatherUNITED event. Speaking of LeatherUNITED, I would like to thank them for their support as well as the support of Rapture Leather, LIFE Detroit, & Mr. Friendly.
Though I am very sad that we have been forced to close, I was very happy for the opportunity to share this experience with all of you. Thank you all for sharing in this important part of my Leather Journey.
In Leather & Service,
Robert L. Uzarski aka NotSoVanillaICE