The ICON Detroit Leather Weekend Begins Oct. 18

By | 2019-10-09T17:23:48-04:00 October 9th, 2019|Entertainment, Features|

The ICON Detroit Leather Weekend is a celebration of leather culture and history in the Detroit community and it’s back for a fifth installment next week. Three nights of events begin on Friday, Oct. 18, at Menjos nightclub for a meet-and-greet. On Saturday the fun continues with the Mr. ICON Detroit Leather 2020 contest at the Marble Bar. The weekend concludes on Sunday afternoon with a pig tea at the Hayloft Saloon.
The ICON Detroit Leather Club has been around for 26 years and throughout that time has hosted dozens of events to raise money for LGBT and HIV/AIDS causes. To date, ICON Detroit has raised over $63,000 for agencies such as the Ruth Ellis Center, the Triangle Foundation, Wellness House of Michigan and many others.
Throughout the years, membership in ICON Detroit has fluctuated.
“Six years ago ICON Detroit consisted of six hardworking members, with four being past title holders, three of whom competed at the International Mr. Leather contest held each year at the end of May in Chicago,” said Steve Teets, a member of ICON Detroit. “We discussed how there used to be so many more contestants from the leather bars and clubs from the Detroit area at IML. We wanted to make Detroit a city that was announced on stage at IML again.”
So, ICON Detroit created the Mr. ICON Detroit Leather contest. The first contest took place in 2015 and Jason Black took home the title. Tom Batemen is Mr. ICON Detroit Leather 2019 and he will hand over the title to the new winner at Saturday’s contest. The winner will be named Mr. ICON Detroit Leather 2020 to represent the year they will compete at IML.
Speaking of titles, Teets was Mr. Michigan Leather 2013. He joined ICON Detroit shortly after being awarded the title.
“I became a full member in April 2013,” Teets recalled “We were very busy traveling the state doing fundraising events to help local charities and organizations in each city. We have always been very community-minded and service-oriented and want to make a difference in the communities in which we live, work and play.”
After becoming a full member, Teets became the group’s pledgemaster.
“I will talk to anyone, so the position was a good fit,” he said. “During my years as pledgemaster we helped the club grow to 13 members.”
Teets encourages anyone interested in joining the club to speak to a member during any of the weekend’s events. A pass for all three events is $25 or tickets may be purchased to individual events. At Friday’s meet-and-greet, all the contestants and judges for the contest will be in attendance. At the contest Saturday, there will be an auction consisting of gift baskets as well as some custom Mr. Friendly leather clothing. Sunday’s pig tea is a luncheon event. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit

About the Author:

Jason A. Michael
Jason A. Michael earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Wayne State University before joining Between The Lines as a contributing writer in 1999. Jason has received both the Spirit of Detroit Award (presented by the Detroit City Council) and the Media Award from the Community Pride Banquet & Awards Ceremony for his writing and activism. Jason is also an Essence magazine bestselling author having written the authorized biography "Strength Of A Woman: The Phyllis Hyman Story," which he released on his own JAM Books imprint.