September 3,1982 / Montrose Voice 15
Gay Games Open in San Francisco
By Daniel Curzon
International Gay News Agency
It began with the crowd of some 11,000
chanting in their seats in the stadium for
the sun to come out and bless the opening
of the first Gay Games. Sure enough the
sun came through, emerging bright and
beautiful by the end of the day.
But one didn't have to look for omens.
The enthusiasm of the crowd was sign
enough that a major historical event was
taking place. Even though the U.S. Olympic Committee obtained an injunction to
prevent the games from using the word
"olympic," those involved with the event
conquered the unequivocal homophobia of
these officials of the sports world.
The emphasis from the chairman ofthe
games, Dr. Tom Waddell, a former Olympian himself, was on the games as a teaching experience, to show the world an
image of gay men and lesbians that
stressed "self-fulfillment and a spirit of
friendship" instead of the beating of
Master of ceremonies Rita Mae Brown
told the crowd in her opening remarks:
"The only people who are queer are those
who don't love anybody."
The crowd rose to listen to Pam Brooks
sing the "Star Spangled Banner" and to
the Rev. Troy Perry deliver an invocation.
The San Francisco Gay Freedon Day
Marching Band then took the field in
Kezar Stadium and played while several
baton twirlers performed, some more flawlessly than others. But the man who
dropped his baton three times got a huge
hand because he kept trying, with an especially high toss of his baton to complete
It's not known whether the original
Olympics (dating from at least 776 B.C.)
had baton twirlers, but those of the past
and those on this day both shared a dedication to encouraging peace and
The present-day Olympics for gays also
differed from the original, in that women
were not only allowed to view the events,
but actually were encouraged to
Flag corps and a women's band (Sistah
Boom) next entered the arena, followed by
dignitaries, including the program committee and members of the San Francisco
Board of Supervisors.
Then came the athletes themselves—
some from countries far away, including
Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and
Peru. Some 1500 paraded past the cheering throng, smiling and waving, dressed
in their colorful uniforms. Numerous
American cities were also represented.
Although there have been rumors that
officials of the U.S. Olympic Committee
had threatened to penalize or even ban
any atheletes who participated in the Gay
Games, there were 1500 women and men
willing to march proudly into the arena
and risk that wrath, truly a courageous act
that more than matches any courage
shown on any playing field in the world.
Congressman Philip Burton was introduced to the crowd and won their hearts by
stating: "As the official representative of
this area in the Congress of the United
States, I welcome these athletes to the first
Gay OlympicsV Burton thus threw a
punch at the Olympic Committee for refusing to allow the Gay Games to use the
word, even though it allowB Special Olympics for the retarded and even a "Cooking
The bitter irony of any committee refusing to let gay people use "Olympics" can
be best appreciated by recalling how much
a part of ancient Greek life homosexuality
was. It was not considered an aberation,
but actually a part of the educational
Congressman Burton presented an official Congressional award to Dr. Tom Waddell and led the crowd in a "Hip, hip,
horray!" for the man who organized the
GAY OLYMPIC GAMES
Jon Roberson (right), coordinator of the National Torch Run, and Harriman
Thatcher, coordinatcr of the Cultural Week activities for the games
The San Francisco Mounted Police did
not appear as scheduled, and there has
been conjecture that the failure to appear
signals some surfacing of the continual
conflict between the gay community and
the police department of San Francisco.
However, acting mayor Doris Ward (if
not the regular mayor, Dianne Feinstein)
proclaimed it to be "Gay Olympics Day,"
thus seconding Congressman Burton's
challenge to the U.S. Olympic Committee.
It wouldn't be a gay event apparently
without the appearance of entertainers,
and thus rock star Tina Turner made her
appearance, dressed in a short yellow
fringed dress, her hair piled high. In no
time she had the crowd rocking and rolling, with such numbers as "Honky Tonk
Woman" and "Proud Mary."
A good many ofthe athletes, gathered in
mid-field in front of the bandstand, got
into the mood and danced and swayed to
Even organizer Waddell and publicist
Zohn Artman were seen cavorting musically on the cinder track ofthe arena.
Singer Meg Christian appeared, somewhat nervous about having to follow the
high-powered Tina Turner, but she found
her voice.and sang "Reach for the Sky,"
the official song written for the occassion.
(Like most songs written for official occa
sions it tended toward the safe.)
But no matter, the day was a day to be
proud, with a vengeance! Mass rallies like
this one speak to some human need for
public spectacle and affirmation. They
depend on large gestures, almost simple-
minded in their appeal to public emotions
(here gay patriotism) and work out their
effects by their very ostentation.
The last event, therefore, must be a
grand one—and it was pretty damn close.
Two former Olympic athletes (Susan
McGreivy and George Frenn) ran the
length of the stadium carrying a lighted
olympic torch. They ran between the rows
of athletes and reached the official receptacle in front of the speakers" stand and
there set the torch to the material within.
It leapt into a large flame and at the same
instant thousands upon thousands of
colored balloons were released from a
covered area at the other end of the
Originally the Greeks sacrificed some
animals and burned the offerings to the
gods. The present-day gay olympians
I think the balloons are better.
Plans are underway to make the Gay
Games an event every fourth year, with
the next one likely to be held in Los
Results of the Gay World
Series in San Francisco
were not available at press
time. Complete coverage
will appear in next week's
Just Marion & Lynn'B Tropical Fruit,
which bowls on Thursdays in the Eddie
Chavez Mixed Bowling League, has maintained the top spot for quite some time
now, and it looks as if there is no way to
unseat them before the end ofthe season.
On August 26, they expanded their lead
Four members bowled 200 games with
two of them bowling two 200 games and
one popping over 200, pins in all three
Bob Akins scored 246, 223 and 214 that
night-while Steve McConaughy racked up
246 and 200. Butch Irish's lucky number
was two that night as he bowled 222 and
222. Paul Buenger hung in there with a
Rob Conners said, "They just went
Their crazy bowling won them a new
summer season record for high hanicap
series with 3225.
Actually, something must have been in
the air because there were eleven bowlers
that night who racked up a total of seventeen 200 games.
The MSA Eddie Chavez Mixed Bowling
League elected officers for the winter season on Thursday, August 26.
Richard Dauchy who bowls on For a
Few Daddies Moore was elected president.
Dauchy is a former president of Monday
Vice president Kathy Winkler was reelected to serve in that position. Winkler
has been filling in for Phil Blakeway who
resigned as president of the league.
The other officers are Butch Irish, Secretary; Mark Hall, Treasurer; and Bob
Akins, sergeant at arms.
The officers were nominated at a meeting on August 12 and all but Dauchy were
unopposed, according to Rob Conners.
Conners said that 44 out of 65 members
voted in the election and that Dauchy won
over Steve McConaughy by six votes.
The officers will take over their duties on
the first week of the winter season which
will begin in about a month.
MSA in Front of
the Eight Ball
The Montrose Sports Association is soliciting sponsers for MSA Pool, said MSA
president Jim Reagan. "Plans are being
made to set up teams."
The teams will consist of a minimun
four and a maximum seven players per
team. They will play on a "rotation basis"
with each team moving from place to place
Reagan thinks that most of the places
will probably be bars, since bars generally
have pool tables, but he does not feel that
other options should be neglected.
"We hope to have about 30 bars
involved," said Reagan. "There are 14 or
16 now." He asked that people who are
interested in playing please call him at
The approximate starting time for the
New MSA Pool is set for September 30.
Last Week's story about the National
Reno Gay Rodeo was accompanied by
some wonderful photos.
Unfortunately, we forgot to say who
Those photos were the work of Bill Hol-
ton and Steve Yocum.
Also, Walter Strickler is the owner ofthe
Barn, not Walter Strickland.