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Gay Chicago

Emergency measures in the wake of Covid-19
Venues Closed - Events Cancelled

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker ordered all restaurants and bars across the state to be closed as of March 16th. All Illinois public and private schools have also been closed. Gatherings of more than 10 people are prohibited with limited exceptions, and all public amusement places are closed, including carnivals, amusement parks and concert halls.
Come workout with us!
Chicago Dragons Rugby Football - On Hold due to Covid-19

Every Tuesday + Thursday 7-9pm practice at Clarendon Park Community Center, 4501 N Clarendon Ave. Social and fundraising events at Replay, Sidetrack, Hydrate and other venues - see their facebook page for upcoming events.
Chicago's Monthly LGBTQ Storytelling Event!
OUTspoken! LGBTQ Stories - On Hold due to Covid-19

First Tuesdays, 7-9pm (doors at 6pm) at Sidetrack. Welcoming new storytellers to the OUTspoken! stage; unique first hand tales from across our diverse community. Inspired, inspiring, funny, heartbreaking - like life…with friends all around you. Typically there will be 6 storytellers and one intermission.
Ongoing monthly events at Chicago's Leather Bar since 1977
Coming up at Touché - On Hold due to Covid-19

First FRI M.A.F.I.A Club Night and CD4 POZ socials/ postive-minded men. First SAT Bear Night w/ 12am pizza. Second FRI Chicago Leather Women's Cruise. Second SAT Dungeon Master Night w/ midnight S/M demo. Third SAT BLUF Leather, Rubber, Uniform Dress Code Gear Night w/ barber + bootblack. Fourth FRI ONYX Club Nights. Fourth SAT Ripe Party w/ Deep Beats, Dim Lights, Hot Go-Go Dudes.
A Rock/Punk/Experimental/New Wave queer night
Glitter Creeps - On Hold due to Covid-19

When they feel like it Rock/Punk/New Wave queer night hosted/ co-curated by Donnie + Madison Moore of ABSOLUTELY NOT. New/exciting local bands from Chicago/ beyond perform onstage. Previously 3rd Wednesdays - now "held WHENEVER THE #$%! WE FEEL LIKE IT! So get pumped for STACKED bills, SIQQ hosts, and of course MORE GLITTER! Keep your eyes peeled and brows on fleek!"
Galleries of contemporary art
The New Contemporary - On Hold due to Covid-19

Ongoing at Art Institute. 44 iconic works by artists such as Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, and Jasper Johns. These paintings, sculptures, and photographs transform the museum’s presentation of contemporary art, bringing new depth and perspective to the Art Institute’s already strong holdings, making this collection the strongest of any encyclopedic art museum in the world.
The lights go down, the men come out - Party the first Wednesday of every month
Men's Room Wednesday - On Hold due to Covid-19

Each first Wednesday of the month, 9pm-2am. Team Sidetrack is geared-up and ready to Party! Join in for naughty games to win fun prizes with Dixie Lynn Cartwright! As always, friends from Men's Room Chicago will be on site with an awesome Pop-Up Shop and cool giveaways! No Cover…it's Sidetrack.
Mix and mingle with the bears
Bear Beer Blast at The SoFo Tap - On Hold due to Covid-19

First Sundays, 1-3pm. Draft beer and shots on special! Plus, Boozy Gummy Bears and FREE Chicago Style Hot Dogs (while they last)! Bears, beers and big weiners on Sunday Funday. See re-opening updates at:
At The Hole inside The Jackhammer Complex every Sunday through December 21st
SINglet Sundays in The Hole - On Hold due to Covid-19

Sundays, 10pm Sundays at The Hole/ Jackhammer. Join the regulars on the wrestling mats with Dan, everyone’s favorite bartender, playing alternative-electro-industrial music favorites. The event also features pop-up fetish demonstrations. See virtual events and Jackhammer re-opening updates at FB
A grand week of Chicago premieres!
Chicago Critics Film Festival 2020 - Postponed until further notice

May 1-7, 2020, the Chicago Film Critics Association week-long selection of films including recent festival favorites and as-yet-undistributed works from a wide variety of filmmakers. The only major film critics group hosting its own festival. Features works from around the globe and offers viewers an eclectic blend of raunchy comedy, introspective drama and mind-blowing fantasy.
Celebrate the 5th Anniversary. Hosted by Sidetrack The Video Bar
Virtual All Things Beyoncé on Insta Live

May 13 + June 10, 2020, 9pm-2am, on Insta Live w/ DiDa Ritz, Saya Naomi,  Sasha Love, Zamora Love, Sapphire Feliciano, Batty Davis and Coco Sho-Nell. Tag-in to win fun prizes! When we reopen: Bow Down to Queen Bey every 2nd WED. Dance to Beyoncé videos/ concert footage; SLAY to drag performances from DiDa Ritz + Saya Naomi, get on stage, show your moves and win Fun Prizes.
Erotic Video Awards - Online for 2020 due to the Coronavirus
The Grabbys XXI - Livestreamed

May 30, 2020. 7:30pm. Featuring the hottest male porn stars in the business. Saturday awards bash (past year at Metro), plus parties with the guys at Hydrate, Sidetrack, Lucky Horseshoe, and Charlies w/ POST GRABBY BBQ at Replay. Hosts: Chi-Chi LaRue + Honey West. Rooms at The Fairmont Chicago Millennium Park have been cancelled. See website for updates, nominees, interviews, and more:
"..not just admission to the films but admission to a subculture” - Roger Ebert
Chicago Underground Film Festival - Postponed until September

June 10-14, 2020, at Logan Theatre. Annual 5-day film showcase: 25 screenings, 4 Bar Talk discussions, 5 After-Parties. independent features, shorts, documentaries + experimental films from around the world. Innovative/ unique programming from lowbrow entertainment of John Waters, Doris Wishman and Coffin Joe to fine art avant-garde films and videos.
A month of festivities
Chicago Pride 2020 - Cancelled (may be rescheduled)

June 28, 2020 Pride Month events, with a late June two day Pride Fest, and Sunday Parade, noon from N Halsted at Belmont to Lincoln Park by way of Broadway & Diversey. The Pride Street Festival, takes place on N Halsted, with music, food, vendors. Dozens more social, cultural, athletic & political events. See website for 2019 media + 2020 updates:
Advance tickets: 5 supersized events for $50
Windy City Black Pride

July 4-7, 2020. Past year included: FRI Urbano Blackout Party at Fantasy); SAT Wet n Wild Pool Party at Holiday Inn Chicago O'Hare + Black Party at Metro; SUN Closing Party at Club Escape. FRI-MON nights at Club Escape. Host hotel: Holiday Inn Chicago O'Hare. See updates TBA at:
A Chicago Swedish mid-summer bash
Midsommarfest - New Dates

August 21-23, 2020, the 55th annual Andersonville summer street festival; around 50,000 people fill Clark Street each year, from Foster to Catalpa for music for cutting-edge bands, ethnic dance troupes, lots of food, and vendor wares. Born out of Andersonville’s Swedish heritage, Midsommarfest will transport you back to old-world Swedish traditions.
Chicago’s leading jazz artists
Chicago Jazz Festival

August 28 - September 6, 2020, Labor Day Weekend in Millennium Park Cultural Center, Von Freeman Pavilion (S Promenade), the Jazz and Heritage Pavilion (N Promenade), the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, the Chicago Cultural Center (78 E Washington), and other venues. A favorite Labor Day Weekend tradition of free, quality live musical performances since 1979.
Prestigious outdoor art fair - the 45th year
Wells Street Art Festival - New Dates

August 29-30, 2020, on N Wells St, between North Ave and Division St. Glass and ceramics, to pencil drawings and oil paintings - a diverse mix of nearly 200-plus juried artists + free educational workshops + tasty cuisine from the neighborhood’s eclectic restaurants and cool music stage acts. A treasure trove of creativity in Chicago’s historic Old Town neighborhood.
The largest two-day street fair in the Midwest
Northalsted Market Days - Tentative New Dates

September 5-6, 2020, 11am-10pm (TBC). Celebrating its 39th anniversary, the annual street fair on 6 blocks of N Halsted, between Belmont and Addison; many musical acts on five stages; hundreds of food, arts and crafts vendors. Dozens of gay bars, dance clubs, restaurants, stores and a bathhouse surround the festival site. A crowd of about 100,000 people arrives from across the globe.
Leather, uniform, & fetish men from around the world
International Mr Leather 2020 - New Dates

September 24-27, 2020, New dates at the Congress Plaza Hotel, 520 S Michigan Ave. Thousands converge to party, network/ select International Mr Leather. Four-day Leather Market leather/fetish artisans/ retailers; erotic attractions, body enhancement specialists. FRI Party. SAT IML Competition + Victory Party at House of Blues. SUN Leather Archives/ Museum Pop-Up Shop. More info/ updates:
38 years of queer film
Reeling: Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival

September 24 - October 4, 2020. Award-winning international feature films, social documentaries & experimental shorts. Past year: 11 days, 65 screenings at six venues around town, including: Landmark's Century Centre, 2828 N Clark St; Instituto Cervantes, 31 W Ohio; Chicago Filmmakers, 5243 N Clark St; ShowPlace ICON, 150 W Roosevelt Rd.
Because Everybody Loves Movies
Chicago International Film Festival

October 14-25, 2020, 12 days at AMC River East 21, 322 E Illinois St. Oldest competitive North American film festival, founded in 1964 to provide an alternative to commercial Hollywood movies that dominated city theaters. The 56th world-renowned annual event with the best in international cinema, new talents, and windows to a world of film previously or otherwise unavailable in Chicago.
Outrageous and imaginative costumes!
Haunted Halsted Halloween 2020

October 31, 2020. The 24th Annual Halloween Parade, 5-10pm up N Halsted from Belmont, to Addison, with cash prize awards and live entertainment. Registration on Halsted just north of Belmont near The Playground Theater, 5-7pm for Costume Contest in one of five categories.
24th Annual
Mr International Rubber

November, 6-8 2020. The Center on Halsted registration. Past year included: Touché Welcome Party and other events; Kink Market Sessions, Latex Wrestling, socials and The Rubber Ball at Center on Halsted;  M.A.F.I.A. party at Steamworks; socials at Cell Block; Mr International Rubber Contest at The Vic Theatre; Jackhammer events; Sidetrack closing party.
Black Alphabet Film Festival
BAFF 2020 Chicago

November, 2020 (TBC). Affirming diversity in gender/ sexual expression within the Black LGBTQ community, and celebrating stories of Black LGBTQ-identified people through the art of film. Two days of screenings at The Reva and David Logan Center. Tickets and line up details at website:
The 32nd Annual
Rhinoceros Theater Festival 2021

January - February, 2021. Annual month-long multi-arts non-narrative, multidisciplinary fringe festival; new theatrical works by invited artists/ companies. The longest-running multi-arts fringe festival in Chicago, the Rhino features works in theater and performance from Chicago companies and national artists alike.