Fourth Friday’s Cruise Director Speaks (Sort of)
Happy hour is a joyous time – just look around the bar and see all the smiling faces. Two dollars for a highball, why not be happy? We’re sitting with a couple members of the Queering Committee, the governing body of Fourth Fridays. It’s a group that consist of gays, straights and mannequins.
Yes. Mannequins. We’re discussing their fearless leader, Julie McCoy. Although she’s not present tonight, she’s there in spirit, or at least, we’re there in spirits. There’s a Corona, gin & tonic, and at least one or two Jack & Cokes.
Julie McCoy is at home because she’s a little stiff. It’s not from the arthritis she gets from sending out all those e-mails about the monthly takeovers of a traditionally straight establishment. It’s because she is the mannequin.
The Rules of the Queering Committee:
1. Fourth Friday shall never be held at a gay bar.
Fourth Friday started in January 2007 at Popkin Tavern with over 60 in attendance. Since then, the e-mail list has grown to over 700. All of this from an idea stemmed from frustration.
“I was tired of hearing people bitch about there being nothing to do in Richmond and people hating gay bars,” Julie’s creator said at the round table. “So, we started a revolution.”
Since then, it’s turned into not only a social event, but one that makes a social statement.
“It opens people’s eyes. A lot of people in our group are stereotypically gay – and a lot of people that we mingle with in these bars may not be comfortable with that. It brings to light this whole other part of Richmond. And for the businesses, it brings attention to the power of money in our community.”
Julie McCoy, named after the cruise director of TV’s Love Boat, became the poster child for this movement so members of the community could cast any differences they have for the party’s original organizer aside.
“I caught wind that some people didn’t want to come to ‘my party’ even though it isn’t. It’s for everyone.” After sending out the second e-mail blast, people wanted to meet Julie. She’d be at the next event decked out with business cards. Everyone wanted to know who she was. She made her debut at Richbrau.
Since then, Julie’s wardrobe has grown exponentially. Enough actually to fill an entire closet. She’s also a size two, which makes another member of the Queering Committee wonder if he could fit in her clothes.
“Well, you could always come over and try them on.”
Finding the perfect outfit for Julie isn’t always easy. She only wears designer.
“I took the leg with me into a shoe store to see what size show she wore. People freaked out, but it worked.”
So underneath those clothes, who is the real Julie McCoy?
“Julie is a retired model. She likes to lay out in the sun and loves to hang out with her gays. She’s a flame dame.”
“Actually, she likes to do anything stationary really.”
Family and Friends Fourth Friday is this Friday, April 24 at Legends Brewing Company, 321 W 7th Street, Richmond, VA. (804) 232-3446. www.legendbrewing.com. Join the mailing list and RSVP via Socializer.
“… They may like men, but that doesn’t mean they’re different”October 12, 2016
- June 2016′s LGBTQ Fourth Friday happens at Cafe Caturra on 6/24, June 16, 2016
- April Family & Friends Fourth Friday at Nacho Mama’s Bar and Grill 4/22, April 19, 2016
- January’s LGBT Fourth Friday happens at KAI on 1/22, January 15, 2016
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