Yes, Virginia, you do have a leather contest.
The inaugural Mr. Old Dominion Leather contest, a ''feeder'' event for January's Mr. Mid-Atlantic Leather (MAL) competition in D.C., is set for Saturday, Oct. 7.
''This is Virginia's first leather contest [linked to] MAL,'' says Scott Harris, the reigning Mr. MAL. ''Virginia had Leather Boy and Leather Sir, but they haven't done that for a few years.'' Nor were those contests official feeder events for MAL, he clarifies.
The area's leather community is falling in line behind the new contest with its characteristic sense of unity.
''We have a sponsoring club, Men of Discipline, as well as The Leather Rack,'' says Harris. ''Titan is doing the Victory Party, and Green Lantern is doing a meet-and-greet before the event. Generally, the leather community pulls together.''
While this premiere Old Dominion contest will be held in the commonwealth, just across the Potomac River at Freddie's Beach Bar in Crystal City, it may not stay there every year.
''The goal is for this to become a mainstream contest throughout Virginia,'' says Harris. ''It may take time to take hold, but we'd like to galvanize the leather community across the state.''
For more information about Mr. Old Dominion Leather, which is open to gay men throughout the region, or to download an application, go to www.freddiesbeachbar.com/leather.htm.