The Delaware Bear Contest
Your Hostess with the Mostest
Your host and entertaintress for this year's competition.
Eric Jaffe is a world ukulele champion, an above average singer, and a genderless glamour monster. Eric is the winner of the 2018 Drag Awards, Best Host, Best Alternative Drag Queen, And Drag Queen of the Year. You can find Eric scouring the Philadelphia cabaret and drag scene screaming at the top of their lungs about food. They recently starred in the original queer musical Basic Witches at The Arden, and starred and directed Thweeney Todd: The Flaming barber of Fleek Street, at Franky Bradley’s, and the Barrymore recommenced, Gay Mis. For more on Eric Jaffe, check your local Wawa, by the milkshake machine, but also check out theericjaffe.com
2019 Mr. Delaware Bear
Mr. Delaware Bear 2019 and North American Bear 2019, Kevin Barni, proudly advocates for the destruction of gender norms as well as expanding how we define who and what a Bear is. By day Kevin is an architectural historian specializing in historic cemetery preservation and is a dad to three amazing cats. He proves that a Bear can have it all in this modern world. Kevin works with various charities in the Mid-Atlantic, and raised over $1500 during his title year. In addition to charity work he spent visiting communities in the northeast, southeast, and mid-west; making new friends, judging contests, and proudly promoting the Delaware bear community. Kevin is a firm believer that no one should be afraid of the sound and power of their own voice, and it is the responsibly of those with privilege to speak loudly in resistance until every voice is heard.
2019 Mr. Delaware Cub
Eric relocated to Philadelphia from Pittsburgh in 2014. He is a pastry chef teaching one-on-one lessons & furniture restorer working in private historic homes. He is a member of the Philadelphians MC and the current Mr Delaware Cub 2019. Eric is associated with a number of non-profits such as Safe Haven Domestic Violence Shelter, ACLU of Delaware, The Delaware Abuse Project and is currently raising money to start a small classroom bakeshop teaching local LGBTQ youth in his area culinary skills for career placement. His community goals are to continue to build relationships between the leather & bear community and get others involved in non-profit based activity.
Your title owner and contest host.
A native Pennsylvanian, Chris Church has spent most of his life in upstate New York but relocated to Delaware in 2018.
Over the years, Chris became more and more involved in the bear community. Holding multiple bear titles himself, Chris hosted events in all across New York State, from bear nights to charity events, to starting the first Mr. New York State Bear event in 2013.
While enjoying the thriving nearby LGBTQ+ communities like Philadelphia and Rehobeth, Chris wanted to bring the furry fun back to the smaller community of Wilmington. In 2018, he began organizing a new incarnation of Delaware Bear.
When not planning the event, Chris designs and teaches color guard across several states and competitive levels, works part time in food service, and occasionally performs in drag, holding his own crown as the winner of the 2008 Ms. Binghamton drag pageant.
Double L Bar (now known as Diego's Hideaway was the site of the first major event hosted by the new Eastern Shore Bears group. The Mr. Delaware Bear/Cub contest brought out a sizable crowd last Saturday evening, and everyone cheered on the contestants.
For those of you who arent in the know, bears are usually guys who have facial hair and big hunky bodies, but its easier to be a bear or spot a bear than it is to define one. The definition is pretty loose, and applies more to an attitude than physical appearance.
Owner of Ricks Fitness and CAMP columnist Rick Moore took top honors as Mr. Delaware Bear. Bethany Beach resident and one of the founders of Eastern Shore Bears, Tom Baxivanos, walked away with Mr. Delaware Bear Cub. The event included an interview, bear wear, club wear, and jockstrap competitions.
The weekend of June 23-25 saw yet another first happening in Rehoboththe first annual Bearapalooza! For those of you who didn't hear about it, the Bearapalooza event was hosted by the Eastern Shore Bears with the support of the Double L bar, and it was great fun!
There were seven competitors in the Mr. Delaware Bear and Delaware Bear Cub contest; four for the Bear category and three for the Cub category. This group of men were very articulate and had things of substance to say during the interview.
The Mr. Delaware Bear 2000 title went to Mr. Paul Redfern of CoBear Contracting Services, Inc. and Mr. Delaware Cub 2000 went to Adam Murta (a frequent visitor from D.C.).