ChicagoPride.com Blogs
Wednesday 2 Jan 2008

TONIGHT: Make Me A Supermodel

Make Me A Supermodel: Featuring Chicago’s own Ronnie Kroell

Tune in Wednesday, January 2nd at 10 central on the BRAVO Network as Tyson Beckford and Niki Taylor host fourteen of the country’s most beautiful people - seven women and seven men - who will compete to launch their modeling careers with $100,000 in cash and that hard-to-get agency contract.

Among the potential seven men in the running is my pal Ronnie Kroell (See Picture Above) of Chicago.

Best known in town for his philanthropic work with 4+1 Productions (4+1.org) an organization dedicated to bridging diversity through performance, art, literature, media, & education in the Chicago-land Community; and based out of the Center on Halsted, Ronnie has also become quite successful in the field of modeling.

Be sure to tune in and see if our Boystown boy makes the cut!
 
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Friday 28 Dec 2007

Ho Ho Ho MO!

I do hope that all of you had a wonderful time during the holiday! I sure did! I spent a few family filled days in Seattle with my Parents. I have to say, I just love the new chapter they seem to be taking in their lives! I see more relaxation and dedication toward recreation and travels. They SO deserve that in their lives!

It has been tradition in my family since I was a wee one to gather together on Christmas Eve for my birthday. (Yep, I just got another year older!) You might find this hard to believe, but I am not really comfortable with an event that is in my honor. I just don’t care for that type of attention and fuss. Most would assume that I go for that style of attention, but I really don’t. A birthday party for me would be best if all my loved ones are around. Nothing needs to be said or done in my honor. I had just that with the dinner that my Parents hosted at Seattle’s best restaurant Canlis! They have such a wonderful atmosphere & staff, and one of THE BEST wine lists in the world! Continuing a tradition that has been done for 30+ years we had a marvelous meal and experience! I sat next to my sainted Parents and enjoyed the stories and fellowship.

Afterwards I was picked up by my pal Jamile to go to Seattle hot spot, Purr Lounge. Owned by my pal Barbie it was the perfect spot for all my Seattle pals to join me. I had the best time and it was good to see everyone!

With a 4:30 a.m. wake-up call, I was off to my Parents to go to the airport together. They were heading down to see my Brother David and his partner (Yep, there are two of us in the fam) Cliff at their home in Palm Springs. (Side Note: I do hope for you all to meet David & Cliff one day in Boystown! They are two terrific guys and I’m proud to call them family!) This is one just example of my Parents new refreshing attitude in their lives. We had Christmas at the airport and I was able to say goodbye to them as they boarded their plane. It’s always a hard time doing that!


When I arrived in Chicago Isaiah picked me up from the airport. It’s always nice to come home to someone and I can’t think of anyone better than he. He’s the best pal! We traveled to Cary, IL to the home of our friend Kristy Riedel. Her Daughter Sandra is Isaiah’s roommate. Did we have a good time! Kristy’s son Bill made one of the best roasts I’ve ever had! That and the “Butt Balls” (The nickname they gave to the brussel sprouts) were tasty too! The fellowship of the whole Riedel family made for the perfect Christmas and I was touched to be a part of it!

Now as I look toward the weekend and the forthcoming New Years Eve Events, I am very happy to be home in Boystown! I can’t wait to see all my pals and places!

A special thank you to Advisor Edward and his Boss” Drew for hosting me to dinner the night before I left for Seattle. It was DAMN YUMMY and Drew even made me a gingerbread cookie in my likeness. (See Picture Above) Well, almost my likeness.

SHOUT OUT: My Singapore Envoy, David Cruse Beal , Twenty Something, Justin Boltz, My hot neighbor, Mark, The very Sweet Larry (Some call him Lars), Your pal and mine, Tajma Hall, My best friend, Isaiah, Editor Steve, President Matthew, and finally, My Bitch Buffy

Cheers Queers!
~Bill

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Wednesday 19 Dec 2007

YELLOW SNOW!

With a generous helping of snow on the ground this weekend it made for a unique schlep around town! I love me some fluffy snow!

I was terribly excited Friday evening to meet up with Joshua. (See Picture Above) We made plans to grab dinner at Pie Hole Pizza and then watch a little Will & Grace. I could talk with Joshua forever! He is so easy to relate to! Our evening was going so well when I heard from Advisor Edward informing us that he was at Cornelia’s enjoying a little soup. I wanted Joshua to meet him so we stopped by for an adult beverage. (Side note: Bartender John makes THE best Cosmopolitan in the world! It’s Christmas in a cup!)

Well, I should have known that we would fall into great discourse and fellowship with Edward. We always do. Happily we were joined by Advisor Edward’s partner and “Boss”, Drew. I was especially happy to connect Joshua and Drew together as Drew is a professor at Northwestern.

Saturday morning I woke up in my normal early fashion. Joshua looked at me like I was possessed saying “Are you getting up for the day right now?”. Talk about the perfect morning laugh. Like my Father, I’ve always been a person who requires little sleep. I know I’m weird.

With Isaiah out of town visiting his Mom for the weekend, we didn’t do our normal Saturday breakfast. I truly miss those when one of us is out of town! Joshua left to go meet up with his uncle and I spent the day in pure enjoyment. I worked out, did the domestic work around the house and enjoyed some down time with my bitch!

Saturday evening I joined Bill Healy in hosting a small party for one of my best friends Brian Douglas in town for the weekend from Kansas. Joining me there was Joshua and his Uncle Frank. What a treat Uncle Frank was! Like Joshua, I could see myself chatting with him all night. He has a great heart to Make A Difference. After a time at Bill’s lovely home, Uncle Frank, Joshua and I schlepped to Cornelia’s to meet up with Advisor Edward his “Boss” Drew and Chicago Piano man Ben Hartman. We had what would best be described as an Old Fashioned Piano Party (See: Grace Adler)

Saying good night to the gang, I stopped in to see the fellas at Minibar|Winebar. Surprisingly Saturday night resident DJ Phil DaBeatz was absent with DJ Riley York filling in nicely for him. On the way home for the evening I made a pit stop at Pie Hole Pizza to say hello to Lady Vera Parker. Did you know that every Tuesday night she does Drag Delivery? (See Picture) Yep, that’s right you can have your pizza delivered by her Highness herself! I live just around the corner, but I’ve got to try that out sometime soon!

Sunday was so nice and relaxing! After my date with Zac Efron (See Picture) at 4PM I got ready for the evening out. Sunday FUN Day was a blast last Sunday night! DJ Chris Eterno brought forth the great sounds as he always does. Everyone was dressed in their sexy (Kind of a creepy word) snowy outfits. (Or lack there of) I was happy to see Jonathan Regnier there and of course Boystown Icon Linda Little! Be sure to not miss out on next weeks Sunday FUN Day at Minibar!!

SHOUT OUTS: Former roommate, Mike Rippe, Minibar|Winebar owners, John & Stu, DJ Scotty Thomson, Chicago cutie, Anthony Fajjj, Singapore Envoy, David Cruse Beal, Gal Pal, Ryan Yoder (I miss you witch with a B) and Miami Hottie, Alex Cox. (See Picture)

Cheers!
~Bill

P.S.Be sure to check out the cover (See Picture) of this weeks Nightspots Magazine featuring the very popular Frida Lay taken by ChicagoPride.com's very own Ryan K.

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Wednesday 12 Dec 2007

Here's Red In Your Eye!

Before I get into bloging, I do hope that all of my Chicago readers picked up a copy of the Red Eye on Monday. (See Picture Above) They interviewed yours truly for a piece on Boystown. It was a good plug for ChicagoPride.com! A special thank you goes to Editor Steve and PJ Gray for their great counsel and research on the story!

What a weird week! As many of you know, I've been fighting a nasty cold that then went right into a cough. For an asthmatic like me, that can be a dangerous combination! Thankfully I'm pretty self-aware when it comes to the whole breathing thing. I bet most would be. I do have to do a shameless plug for the wonder working Airborne vitamin! Seriously, these wonder working tablets are worth ten times their weight in gold. My Mom turned me on to them. For lack of a better description, they are like a vitamin enema! I will also say this they are the perfect cure for a hangover! Just take it before you go to bed and you'll be good to go!

Feeling 85% better I braved the cold Boystown air to attend the Fruday night Grand Opening private party held by the newly opened Scarlet. The owners spared no expense in giving the VIP treatment to 200 of it's favorite clients. On hand was your pal and mine, Nightspots Magazine guru Kirk Williamson. I know that many see Kirk as "That Guy From The Magazine" but I'm proud to call him my friend. He is such a sweet spirit! Also in attendance was Chicago's own Eric West. I want to make sure you know just how kind and caring he is. EVERY time I see him he reaches out to me in genuine care to ask how I'm doing. One thing that Erik (Brian to me) does in his life is personal training. Every time I see him at my gym, he goes out of his way to encourage me. For this asthmatic, that is major appreciated! Eric, Kirk and I got into a great conversation about our private lives outside of the spotlight. We all agreed that we enjoy both. I felt a great kindred spirit with these boys and truly enjoyed our mutual admiration society!

With joy in my step, I needed to head up to the Lakeshore Theater to see Amy & Freddy perform their holiday show How The Diva Stole Christmas 2. With camera man Brendan-John in tow we arrived just in time to have some private fellowship with the comedy pair. Now, I've know Amy and Freddy for a long time and each time I see them it's like the first. That girl sure knows how to light up a room! (See Picture) Sure, she has great talent and is easily one of the funniest people I've ever known, but what I like about Amy the most is that she is uber real. What you see is what you get. I can't tell you how much I appreciate her honestly. She's a great friend! Freddy is beyond words! (See Picture) I'm not sure I've ever met anyone with such a tender heart! He just radiates love, acceptance and joy! It's no wonder that he and his partner Lance have such a blessed life! Freddy is a wonderful friend!

With a wonderful photo shoot in the back of Lakeshore Theater I had the honor of introducing my friends to the audience. OH MY WORD was that fun! Even more fun was the show itself! I've got to tell you, I've never laughed so hard! True, some of the songs are more naughty than nice, but that makes it so zany! I could have never guessed that I would see Freddy Allen, the gay poster child himself singing about Santa farting! I died! (Said in the best Jack McFarland style)

While there I ran into Fag-Friendly state Representative Sarah Feigenholtz (See Picture) celebrating her birthday. She and I had a blast reuniting. I also had the joy of running into my pal Terri Yaki and her wonderfully charming husband All-The-Way-Ray! No matter what mood I'm in, that couple always makes me smile! Seriously, "How The Diva Stole Christmas 2" is a must see! Not only is it the perfect date, but it puts just the right edge on the HO-liday season!

From there camera guy, Brenden-John and I went back to Scarlet since I promised that I'd come back after the show. There I was reunited with a ton of people including Mike Liska (The man who first called me the Mayor of Boystown) and Hadley Rue (the man who plays in Boystown! *wink*). With spotlights in the air, Scarlet really threw a great party.

I went on to my favorite home-away-from-home, Minibar|Winebar where I spent some time loving the lovely Linda Little on the Winebar side. She truly is the icon of Boystown! We sure had a blast! From there it was off to home with my bitch. I knew Saturday would be a busy fun day!

Saturday morning started out as it always does with a stop at my cleaners, Diamond Cleaners and breakfast with Isaiah. This is always my favorite time of the week. I so enjoy our tradition. This Saturday was even more special as we are celebrating Isaiah's birthday. Although it isn't officially on the 8th but rather the 9th of December, we made a full day of it with eating, drinking, shopping, drinking, eating, and drinking. By now most of you are more than aware of how special Isaiah is to me. Many focus on the apparently “bizarre” fact that we dated for as long as we did and still remain friends. I see more that he is family to me and one important part of my life! He's the best, best friend one could ask for!

Saturday evening a number of us, including Bill Healy, Sandra & Ryan and Advisor Edward converged on JBar downtown for the birthday festivities. JBar is attached to the James Hotel and is one fun venue. From there we were off to Isaiah’s favorite Boystown night spot, Minibar|Winebar, courtesy of a stretch limo provided by Advisor Edward. Whilst there we ran into my pal and Minibar bartender Alex and Doorman John.

Sunday was spent in pure un-adulterated relaxation. I’ve come to really enjoy days like that! I was the lucky boy to have dinner with my great pal, Jeremy Ehrhart at Boystown’s Pie Hole Pizza. Honestly, I never have a bad experience there and it’s so damn tasty! We stopped in to get some Foozie loving at Roscoe’s Male Call and enjoy some fun guy watching. Fellowship with Jeremy is always the best!

Minibar’s Sunday FUN Day was SO much fun last night! Having DJ Chris Eterno and DJ Phil DaBeatz dueling was really amazing! I really enjoy great music like that! Of course the beautiful Minibar staff, Kristopher, Shon and Dexter (See Picture) ALWAYS make my night! Be sure to not miss out on next weeks FUN Day!

Is it just me or did a lot of my Chicago readers slip on the ice this weekend!? (Like me, twice)

SHOUT OUT: Former roommate, Clydee, My Singapore Envoy, David Cruse Beal (Thanks for the Real Time Updates!), Boystown Icon, Linda Little, Hydrate Doorman and expert hugger, Jimmy, Emily front man, Nikolaus, Photographer, Brenden-John, and my pal and Chicago Entertainer, Teri Yaki!


Cheers to a great week!
~Bill

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Monday 3 Dec 2007

The Pleasure of Cozy Pizza!

What a fabulous weekend! To be honest, I really had a quiet one, but there were moments of social bliss. It has to be said, I love the moments where I can relax at home with no agenda and a warm bowl of soup. This was that kind of weekend!

Friday evening I went on a date with my Bitch and a few episodes of Will & Grace at Chet Bill. I guess all the reminiscing with Josh on Thursday about our favorite episodes put me in the mood. I’m sure if people could have seen me laughing by myself and enjoying the evening they would have thought I was weird. (More weird)

Saturday started out as it always does with breakfast with Isaiah. I think this is my favorite meal of the week. We go to the same location every Saturday and sit in the section with our favorite waitress, Tatiana. After a leisurely breakfast, we went up to Trader Joe’s to stock up on Grocery’s. I don’t know about you, but I love that place! They've got a great selection and good prices. I was even able to get a Christmas tree there. (Well, more like a Rosemary plant that kind of looks like a mini tree. HOW GAY!) Saying goodbye to Isaiah I unpacked my loot and tucked myself into an afternoon of lunch and fellowship with my dog as the snow came down outside. It was perfect.

Saturday night started with my pal and first close friend in Chicago, Jeremy. I met up with he and his pal Austin at Halsted’s Bar & Grill. I had a bowl of potato soup (My favorite kind). Now that I think about it, I was continuing my cozy Saturday by that choice. From there, Jeremy and I headed off to see our friend Paul Kepner at the World’s Smallest Apartment (320 square feet). Paul was throwing his annual holiday party. It’ pretty amazing how many people you can fit into that place. The faux fireplace made it even cozier!

I ran into my pal Bill Healy there and we continued the evening at Minibar where superstar DJ Phil DaBeatz (aka DJ Roush) was doing his thing. I just love this guy! Every time we chat I am more and more impressed with him. He’s got a great heart and a good head on his shoulders! (NOTE: Phil, I promise you, we’ll do dinner soon!)

Bill Healy wanted to go check out a cute guy that he knows at Boystown’s new night spot, Scarlet. I’m so glad that we went because we were able to run into my pals Edward and Drew! I just love to fellowship with them! They are BEYOND smart and always get me thinking. We had a PERFECT time! I got back to Minibar just before they closed for the night (I know, I was out late) to say hello to my pal Alex. (See Picture) It is always a pleasure to see him and catch up a bit! (NOTE: He’s straight people! Get it out of your head that you can “change” him. It isn’t gonna happen!)

Sunday I pulled a father and woke up early. My father does that all the time. No matter what time we go to sleep, it’s up early the next day. I envy one’s ability to sleep in! I had yet another perfect day of DVD’s, Dog, and Delectable eats. (Don’t ya just love cheese!?!?!) As the evening came near, I joined Edward, Drew and Chicago piano man, Ben Hartman for dinner. From there is was off to SUNDAY FUN DAY at Minibar. We have so much fun on Sundays! There is a general great mood in the room as DJ Chris Eterno spins and everyone recaps the weekend’s events. Joining me was Isaiah, Edward, Drew, Ben, Tommy, Fece, and new Chicago resident, Seattle Josh. (I've now got to lable my Josh's since I know more than one.) Josh is from my hometown of Seattle and has been here for a little over two months now.

Since it was a school night for me, I had to make myself leave at midnight. On my way out I was pleased to run into my great pal, and WILDE bartender, Ryan Yoder. (See Picture) I’m telling you, that boy just lights up any room! (Love ya Yo!).

Saying goodbye to everyone I stepped out of Minibar to make the short trek home. Right behind me was my friend Ross. (See Picture Above) We went right into great conversation and fellowship as we always do. He invited me to join him for a few slices of pizza at Pie Hole Pizza. Arriving there, we ran into Lady Vera Parker incognito behind the counter. What an added bonus!

Ross and I had such a nice time catching up and chatting. He was kind enough to share with me his story of coming out to his parents. I was able to see just how sweet he really is through his story! We sat there feeling all warm and fuzzy in the realization that we are both loved by our parents! Saying good night I headed off home for the evening to my bitch and bed. Altogether a lovely, COZY weekend!

SHOUT OUT’s: Happy Birthday to Cocktail owner, Geno, My gal-pal, Zach, Boystown Icon, Linda Little, Saturday Minibar Resident DJ, Phil DaBeatz, 4PLUS1's Ronnie Kroell, Minibar owners John & Stu, and Josh, the very sweet guy from Nashville, Tennessee.

Happy Monday Y’all!
~Bill

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