In this issue we have Sparkie (he/him) who’s the producer of Bootblack Round Up, as well as Wisconsin Leather Pride Person of Leather 2020/2021.  He came in as 1st runner up at International Mr. Boot Black in 2008 and 2nd runner up in 2019. Below he shares his passion for Bootblacking:

When did you realize you were a Bootblack?

Sparkie: When I saw, looked, and smelled the product, the energy.

What does being a Bootblack mean to you?

Sparkie: It means you’re all about energy, people, their gear (leather & boots) and making it beautiful.

Do you have a title or desire to have one? If yes, please tell us more.

Sparkie: Illinois Community Bootblack 2015, 1st runner up IMBB 2008, 2nd runner up IMBB 2019, Central Plains Leatherboy 2009, and Wisconsin Leather Pride Person of Leather 2020/2021

Tell us about your Bootblack journey. How did you get started?  Has it been a smooth one? Bumpy?

Sparkie: My journey has been a great one.  I’ve learned and am still always learning.  I started in San Francisco and went all over the United States. I’ve had mentors my whole life and now have mentee’s.  My journey has been smooth and non-bumpy.

What’s been a memorable experience you’ve had as a Bootblack?

Sparkie: I have a lot of memorable experiences, but I would say that seeing my event Bootblack Round Up going further. It started as a small event as a fundraiser at the end of my title year in 2015 and has grown nationwide to help both people and charities.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to be a Bootblack?

Sparkie: To learn as much as you can, and never think you know everything.

Sparkie (he/him)

Are you at least


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