Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

BELMONT ROCKS BATTLE CONTINUES AS CITY MOVES EVENT TO MONTROSE
by Karen Hawkins
2001-06-20

This article shared 1345 times since Wed Jun 20, 2001
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


Though the city and police department are set in their decision to move the 20-year-plus Belmont Rocks celebration to Montrose Harbor, some GLBT activists have said they intend to stand their ground at Belmont.

The daylong event, held on Pride Sunday and predominantly attended by Blacks and Latinos, is a gay institution for many in the community and draws thousands of people from around the country.

In early May, officials citing concerns about public safety announced that the event was moving.

"It's such a strain on the whole neighborhood to have it all in the same area," said Ald. Bernie Hansen, whose ward includes the Pride parade and Belmont Rocks. "It's just too much of a drain."

In a letter dated Aug. 17, 2000, Hansen urges Park District General Superintendent David Doig not to issue permits for "events at any park in my ward the day of the Gay Pride Parade that are not directly related to the parade itself. ... These events draw unruly and raucous people into the neighborhood who have shown a blatant disregard for the residents of my ward and their property."

However, in January of this year, Belmont Rocks Coordinating Committee President Michael O'Connor was given a permit for the Rocks, leading Hansen to again write to Doig.

In a Jan. 17, 2001, letter, Hansen chastises Doig for issuing the permit and says, "I hope I do not have to pursue alternative avenues to prevent this group from again wreaking havoc on our neighborhood."

Hansen indicates in the letter that 23rd District Police Commander Richard Guerrero agrees with him on the matter.

By late March, O'Connor had received a revised park district permit, this one for Montrose Harbor.

O'Connor and others have taken issue with Hansen's depiction of the crowds at the Rocks as "unruly and raucous."

"There is nothing in the police record to indicate that any of this is true," O'Connor said. "I question his accusation. Who is he talking about?"

Hansen said in May that a command post will be set up notifying people that the Rocks event has been moved. The parking lot at Belmont will be closed and used as a staging area for the day's events, though the land south of the staging area will be open for picnics.

According to a city release, Montrose Harbor offers "improved access, expanded parking, more spaces for picnics, additional public conveniences, nearby beach facilities and a playground for children."

While O'Connor is upset with the way the move was carried out—without input from the Belmont Rocks Coordinating Committee—he said his focus is to make the most of the day.

"All I want to do is make sure we have a fun-filled day at Montrose Beach," he said. "We'll deal with ( the political situation ) on June 25."

Others in the community, however, reportedly aren't as willing to make concessions. People who spoke on the condition of anonymity said they intend to test the city's stated openness to having Belmont open to picnics. They said they're going to set up at Belmont as they always have and see how they are treated by the police.

There are those among them who believe that racism, not public safety, ultimately fueled the move to Montrose.

"It's unfortunate that the police ... are trying to resegregate Belmont Rocks," O'Connor said.


This article shared 1345 times since Wed Jun 20, 2001
facebook twitter google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

MUSIC ROUNDUP: Riot Fest rocks and rolls with the punches 2021-09-22
- Riot Fest is a massive music festival held annually at Chicago's Douglas Park, held this year on Sept. 16-19 Usually a three-day celebration, Riot held a preview party Sept.16 that began at 2:30 p.m. for the ...


Gay News

AIDS Garden Chicago supporters celebrate Keith Haring sculpture installation 2019-12-20
- AIDS Garden Chicago supporters gathered Dec. 20 at the 2.5 acre lakefront garden site south of Belmont Harbor near the location of the now-defunct Belmont Rocks to celebrate the installation of the 30 foot Keith Haring ...


Gay News

PASSAGES: HIV/AIDS activist Rydwels remembered Oct. 27 2019-10-25
- The ashes of longtime HIV/AIDS activist Bill Rydwels, who passed away Oct. 3, were scattered from Belmont Rocks at 11 a.m. the morning of Sunday, Oct. 27. Rydwels, 87, who was diagnosed with HIV in 1985, ...


Gay News

Gay skier/actor at Roscoe's Oct. 24 2019-10-17
- Openly gay Olympic freestyle skier and actor (American Horror Story) Gus Kenworthy is teaming with Coors Light to throw an '80s rock-themed Halloween party in Chicago. "Halloween Rocks" is happening Thursday, Oct. 24, at 10 p.m. ...


Gay News

Same-sex couple rocks records at Rattleback 2019-01-16
- There's a new retailer in town, called Rattlebake Records, located in Andersonville at 5405 N. Clark St. Husband-and-husband team Paul Ruffino and Mike Weaver opened the place recently and it features vinyl, CDs, cassettes, movies and ...


Gay News

Local historian discusses Belmont Rocks' LGBTQ history at forum 2018-04-24
- Author, scholar and historian Owen Keehnen discussed "Preserving Us: Documenting Life at the Belmont Rocks" April 19 at Columbia College. Columbia College's Department of Humanities, History and Social Sciences sponsored ...


Gay News

Belmont Rocks lecture at Columbia April 19 2018-04-11
- Local scholar/historian Owen Keehnen will join Carmelo Esterrich, an associate professor at Columbia College, to discuss LGBTQ life at the Belmont Rocks. The lecture will take place at Columbia College, 624 S. Michigan Ave., room 301, ...


Gay News

AIDS garden planned for Belmont Rocks; Haring art to be included 2018-03-14
- About a dozen people gathered for a meeting March 8 to discuss a planned garden to memorialize the loss, activism and resilience of Chicago's fight against HIV/AIDS. The planned garden, at the Belmont Rocks in Lake ...


Gay News

NUNN ON ONE: MUSIC Donnie Moore rocks out in the band Absolutely Not 2017-09-27
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Composed of Donnie Moore, Madison Moore and Santiago Guerrero, the band Absolutely Not knows how to rock. This Chicago-based group is influenced by punk music while creating something absolutely new. Their latest endeavor is titled Errors ...


Gay News

Belmont Rocks project planned 2017-09-27
- The Belmont Rocks played an undeniably important part in the LGBTQ community's history and in the lives of many LGBTQ Chicagoans. "The Rocks" were "a place to call our own—a place of celebrations and partying, of ...


Gay News

BOOK REVIEW Off the Rocks, Vol. 20 2017-07-12
- Allison Fradkin, director; $15; NewTown Writers Press; 279 pages There's a certain tone of absurdity that NewTown Writers Press often hits in its anthology: often droll, occasionally glib. Volume 20 focuses on that queerest of spectacles—the ...


Gay News

Belmont Rocks project planned 2017-06-17
- The Belmont Rocks played an undeniably important part in the LGBTQ community's history and in the lives of many LGBTQ Chicagoans. "The Rocks" were "a place to call our own—a place of celebrations and partying, of ...


Gay News

CONCERT REVIEW U2 still rocks decades later 2017-06-06
- Irish rock band U2 was formed way back in 1976. After releasing the iconic The Joshua Tree in 1987, the act's career took off in the United States with radio-friendly hit singles. Now, in 2017, a ...


Gay News

Anthology of GLBT writing to be launched with open mic 2017-01-09
- The NewTown Writers will present a live lit and open mic event on Jan. 19 to celebrate the publication of the group's latest Off the Rocks anthology. This edition, volume 20 in the series, has been ...


Gay News

NUNN ON ONE: MUSIC Fitz and the Tantrums' Jeremy Ruzumna on the band, Morrissey 2016-09-13
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times - Now that another Lollapalooza has come and gone, there's one last huge music festival ready to jam in Chicago. Riot Fest rocks out at Douglas Park to end summer, and the lineup is huge. Headlining on ...


 



Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.