Same-* couples compete in gay games
If gays want to play football or darts, Chicago is the place to be. The 2006 Chicago Gay Games, which opened on July 15, lasts a week. The pairs figure skating and ballroom dance, both staged last Wednesday, are unmistakably, incontrovertibly gay. They are also among the most popular events for spectators.
The events provide one of the precious few venues for same-* couples to participate in activities like figure skating and ballroom dancing without enduring jeers or sideways glances.
"That they can for once hold hands with a man here is uplifting," said Stina Rogal, who is co-organizing the Gay Games figure skating competition. "It makes all the years they spent working as hard as anyone else pay off."
At the downtown Hilton Chicago, women twirled women while wearing matching sequined dresses or with one dressed conservatively as the leader and the follower decked out in a hot pink two-piece outfit.
Men spun across the floor with other men, often dressed in identical black tuxedos. One follower wore a flowing pink scarf that trailed behind him on the dance floor.
"If two men dance Latin together, it's very powerful," said Ursula Hegglin, 40, of Switzerland. "Their elegance across the floor is marvelous."
And two women can be a more graceful pairing.
Hegglin and Loredana Conte, 45, who are both dance partners and a romantic couple, wore matching one-piece jumpsuits with Hegglin in pink and Conte in black.