From Issue 3.5 - June 1997
The 19th annual International Mr. Leather contest took place May 25 at the Congress Theater in Chicago. Kevin Cwayna, Mr. Minnesota Leather, captured the title over 52 other contestants. He said his first indication that he was a leatherman came on his first trip to a hardware store.
First runner-up was Mark Malan of Orange County, the 1995 Master title holder in the Southern California Masters and Slaves Contest. Malan entered the contest when the man he was to assist in the competition missed his plane, and he really filled the theater with his exuberance and high octane energy.
Second runner-up was Paul Eric Zinser of New York City's Lure bar. Mr. SF Leather Tom Powers placed among the 20 semifinalists. Our hometown boy from the Eagle, Driller, took the International Bootblack title -- that's starting from the bottom up!
The contest attendees filled one Ramada and two Hyatts, and the
leather market filled three floors with leatherware. Next year will be
the 20th anniversary of the contest, so get your plans carved into