We hold our Mr VicBears competition each year in January and February as part of our VicBears BearFEST. During our annual competition we crown our Mr VicBears for the coming year who will represent us at the Mr Australasia Bear Contest during Southern HiBearnation. This is an important time of year for us as it forms part of the LGBTI community wide Midsumma Festival!
This year, our Mr VicBears Contest will be held at the Laird on Saturday 25 January 2020.
You can click on the contestant names above to view your individual profile and learn more about them!
I grew up bouncing around from different small towns in country NSW and QLD because I’m a an army brat. I never had a real sense of community till I moved to Melbourne and was introduced to the Bears and the laird. Nothing would give me more pride then to represent the people and place I call home.
I want to be Mr Vic Bear because this community is home to me
A little about me. I work I’m liquid and technical waste management, I’m an avid gamer, I also host trivia nights all over Melbourne and dabble in stand up comedy.
Oh hi there. Didn’t expect to see you here… sooo… ah… you come here often? Well anyway, my names Christian. I grew up in a small country town in the middle of the Yarra Valley. I grew up on a farm working with my parents making hops (used for beer) then when i was in high school my family moved into Wangaratta to finish my schooling and then in the past 6 months i was finally able to move to Melbourne where i was able to audition for mr VIC bear 2020
I would like to be mr VIC bear 2020 because it would be a good opportunity for me to grow as a person and really put myself to the test to see if i can take on the responsibility of representing the LGBT community. I would like to use the opportunity granted to me by winning to bring about change into the community and represent smaller less vocal communities within the gay community itself
I’m Jake and I’m 32 years old. Once upon a time at school, I put on some bright red heels and started reading a book to a bunch of stuffed bears. My teacher described this as “colourful, eccentric, extraordinarily talented; with the right nurturing he can probably achieve anything.”
I’ve always been the outsider who tries to fit in but never really seems to – and I know there are many others like me. As bears, we spend a lot of time dividing ourselves into smaller groups instead of looking at the bigger picture.
As the next Mr VicBears it would be my goal to bring us all closer together. We should celebrate each other’s quirks, not try to hide them. We should help each other to become the very best bears we can possibly be.
Hi I’m Josh and I’ve always liked to set myself goals, from wrestling and rugby to starting my masters, running away to sea for three years or entering a Mr Bear competition.
I am the oldest of eight and grew up jumping between cities in Australia and New Zealand, sometimes our family and our community ends up not being the one we are born into but one that we seek out and make for ourselves. The bear community provided me with an environment in which I felt able to explore who I was and helped me grow into the bear that I wanted to be.
My diverse experiences growing up, my years of volunteer work and seven years of working as a public servant has instilled within me a strong sense of family, of community and of compassion.
I want to be Mr Vic Bear so that I can represent this family that I’ve become a part of here, so that I am better able to give back and so that I can help others know that regardless of where you’re from, what you look like or what team you support there is a place for you here where you can be yourself and find your own inner bear.
Mr VicBears Title Holders
Matt Gardener (Current)
After winning the Mr VicBears title in January 2018, Matt went on to represent the club beautifully at a huge variety of events around Australia. Not only bear events from our associate bear clubs in Brisbane and Sydney but also at rural Victorian events such as Geelong Pride march were he proudly helped carry the club banner.
Matt has also gone above and beyond, representing the bear name at events such as Vice at the Laird where he was put on demonstration on stage and “roped up” by fellow sashbearded Michael Deppeler (Mr Australian Pup And Handler 2019).
Freddy Raftellis (2018)
Freddy took home the sash in April 2018. He went on to represent the VicBears at a huge variety of events around Australia. Not only bear events from our associate bear clubs in Brisbane and Sydney but also at many rural Victorian events!
Freddy also went above and beyond through his Auction event held at the Laird where he managed to raise over $5000 to help the implementation of a buddy program to pair an HIV positive mentor with a newly diagnosed ‘buddy’ in regional and rural areas, where there is little to no support or services to help newly diagnosed people living with HIV navigate their experience and connect with their community.
Previous Mr VicBears title holders include:
- 2017 – Michael Rigby
- 2016 – Patrick Greber
- 2015 – David Cooke
- 2014 – Erin O’Neil