(10.69) archives: staying "groovy".
The Advocate's practice of putting young gay men on the cover
has drawn criticism and praise from all corners of the community, but
it's a tradition that dates back to the magazine's very
beginnings. Thirty-six years ago, amid headlines about murder and
injustice, a blond blue-eyed 22-year-old go-go dancer named Dino Nova
smiled out from the newsstands as the winner of The Advocate's
Groovy Guy contest.
The then-fledgling monthly newspaper had launched the competition
the previous year in part to help promote its existence, boost ad sales,
and help unite the gay community of Los Angeles. The first Groovy Guy
competition had been a modest success, with only seven contestants and
about 150 in the audience. In 1969, however, the event took off, with 18
contestants and more than 700 people in attendance at the Los Angeles
International Hotel. The annual event continued through 1972.