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Mid Atlantic Leather 2022

By January 23, 2022


Smaller MAL a Big Hit!

by Rodney Burger     Photos by Rodney Burger, Todd Wolfstryker and from Facebook

Mr. Mayhem Leather 2021 Duke, from Alexandria, Virginia, was sashed Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather 2022 during Mid-Atlantic Leather Weekend (MAL), January 14-17 at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill. Runner- up was awarded to Mr. Pittsburgh Leather Bear 2020-2021 Josh Englert. Also competing were Mr. Northwoods 2021 Buck Wilder and Roberto Calabrese from Washington, DC.


Usually seen as the festive start of the Leather community’s new year, this year’s MAL was not without controversy. Shortly after the ball dropped in Times Square, social media became filled with speculation regarding the possible cancellation of one of the largest Leather gatherings in the world. Even before an official announcement was made by event producers, the Centaur MC, some Leather vendors and Leather clubs felt the need to offer an official proclamation questioning if a Leather event should be held while the COVID-19 pandemic continues and professing that they would not be participating. Some of the Centaur MC members I spoke with were very saddened by the lack of Leather brotherhood in a divided community. In the end, the members of the Centaur MC voted and MAL went on in a scaled-back form. With a DC-wide vaccination and mask mandate in place, a smaller vendor mart, fewer dances, and a reduction in attendance, MAL 2022 was an intimate celebration. The Centaur MC did not drop the ball.

Although reduced in size, the Leather vendor mart still provided lots of great shopping and appeared to be very successful for those vendors who did attend. By Sunday morning, Anubis Gear was almost sold out of their fabulous rope harnesses. Other vendors included Rubio Leather, Wolfstryker Leather, Le Chateau Exotique, Cockeye Kink Custom Fetish Gear, Aurora Clothiers by Allen Gale, and more. Since shoppers had to wear masks, a separate ballroom was set aside with a bar, music, scattered high-top tables, and colored lights for enjoying a beverage.

Saturday night’s formal Leather Cocktails went on as planned with open bars and lots of great food. Usually at the event, there is a parade of colors with a representative of each Leather club brought onstage for a photo op. The Centaur MC were cautious to not have large groups together for pictures. There was also no parade of titleholders at the contest and no Mama’s Family photo taken. The tradition of dropping a cockring at the end of Leather Cocktails continued with Centaur MC President Patty Brown and MAL Contest Producer Todd White doing the honors.    

After the brunch on Sunday, the Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather 2022 Contest was held with Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather 1993 Frank Nowicki emceeing a very quickly moving contest.

This year’s judges were Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather 2020-2021 David Spivey, Miss Adams Morgan 2022 Chad Alan, sexual health educator / model / host of the Jason Elliott Show Jason Elliott, Mid-Atlantic Pup Handler 2018- 2019/ Mr. Maryland Leather 2016 Eli Ra, comedian/ producer/ emcee Karen Ultra, Miss Gay Southeast United States at Large 2021 / First runner Up Miss Gay United States Savanna C. Sanchez, and Maryland Mr. Drummer 2001 Rodney Burger. Tally Masters were Alex Wagner-Romero and International Community Bootblack 2017 / Mid-Atlantic Leatherboy 2012 boy john urso. Keeping the judges happy was Judges’ Boy Grant Collins.





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The contest began with the national anthems of Canada and the United States with the flags being presented by Mr. Maryland Leather 2007 Sir Steve and ShipMates Club pledge Vernon.

Contestants competed in barwear, jockstrap/ physique, formal Leather/ onstage question, and interviews (which were held with the judges on Saturday morning). On Friday evening, the Centaur MC hosted a meet and greet reception in the hotel’s presidential suite for judges and contestants.

Entertainment was provided by Savanna C Sanchez who brought down the house with her performance of Stevie Nicks’ Edge of Seventeen. During his step down speech, Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather 2020-2021 David Spivey said it best, “I love rollercoasters and the past two years have been that. How do you do this in a pandemic?” 

MAL 2022 ended with the traditional Reaction Dance at the 9:30 Club. MAL 2022 was not the overwhelming crowd of Leatherfolk like years past, but looking around it reminded everyone that the world has not ended and life goes on. How do you do this in a pandemic? The Centaur MC found a way.