Bunnies on the Bayou
Website

Wiki Page

 
Above, Of Related Interest:
Easter Sleaze Bonnet Contest
- 1981

Better to take the intro in their own words from their website...

1981

Below, no, it wasn't an organized fundraiser yet,
but the "Bunny Fuck Party" was a hot ticket invite
to get. Here is the earliest gay media mention
I found for it, along with a photo of the house on Kipling.

Below is Roy Ourso (in black hat) at the 1979 March on Washington


History Varies
 
There seems to be two schools of thought as to how and when the event began...
the website claims a "birthday party in 1979" at an apartment complex on Clay.
The other starts at a party in 1981 organized by a group of friends at their house on Kipling.
As you view the long page of clippings you will see variations in the year and location.
Note that between 1996 and 1997 it gains a year.

And I asked one of the original hosts of the 1981 party, Steve Sobota, to write down what he remembers of the party.

In 1980 Roy Ourso, Bobby Lovell, and I leased a house together at 1752 Kipling. The house was large very roomy with a great huge back yard.That house soon became a gathering place for our friends. We all had separate but often times overlapping social circles. Roy had the fitness exchange crowd, Bobby the Dirty Sally and Numbers crowd and I was active in politics and Tea for Two Thousand. When Roy came back from Mardi Gras in New Orleans in 1981 we were having coffee one morning and he said Kitty ( there you know my secret name ) let’s have a huge party at Easter about “300 of our nearest and dearest," so we started planning and budgeting.

We thought we could do it for around 500 dollars, just serving beer water and soft drinks We decided on 6 hosts: Roy, Bobby, Me, Steve Shiflett ( Roy’s best friend and a dear friend of mine ), James Garner and I’ll be damned if I can recall the other host.
We decided Easter Sunday, the invites and t shirts would be hot pink. We would have a DJ and dancing in the driveway, each host would get 50 invitations.

We met and talked about a theme...“Bunny Bash “ was mentioned...“Bunny Hump” and then I threw out “ Bunny Fuck," as the old saying fucking like bunnies. That choice was voted unanimously. We tossed about a logo and Roy crudely drew 3 rabbits humping in a daisy chain position. That was it. We found a printer had invites done, t shirts made, and ordered beer, ice drinks had huge coolers built. Roy talked to Ram Rochaabout music .

Two or theee weeks before the party there was already a great buzz. We started prepping the yard, cleaning the garage for the dj and planning decorations.The yard had such great plantings. We kept it simple. Bobby found these wonderful balloons that were bunny heads. From 6 to 8 feet high that we tied to the chimney in front. Michael Duhrer was an up and coming florist and a friend and we just ordered huge bunches of white Easter Lilly’s. They were at the check in table at base of driveway.

We worked our asses off Friday and Saturday prepping the house and yard. Sunday we got up and early iced the drinks down. The weather was glorious and by 2: 00 as guests started to arrive it was magic happening. Everything was just dazzling. We all knew there was no place better to be that day. Everybody was there and on such good behavior. I would imagine the neighbors for two blocks must have been a little upset. Then the motor cycle crowd showed up...what’s better than leather and pink bunnies and even the two in pink jockstraps in the front yard.

The party was a rousing success, only lasting from 2 to 4pm, so as not to upset the bars having Easter doings. Way too many details I’m sure and we were really good at letting people with invites have plus ones or in some cases plus entourage. We were very specific in planning. it wasn’t to be political or a fund raiser...just as Roy said, 300 of our dearest friends.

I had heard mention of an Easter party of sorts on Clay. I think it is the one that is not connected to the others. Bunny Fuck at our house was the first “ Bunny Fuck” party. It was at our house in 1981, 82, and 83. After that with our knowledge and tacit consent another group of men starting hosting an Easter party calling it Bunny Fuck. It was this second group that formed what became Bunnies on the Bayou so there is a connection between all three entities. The one I do not see a connection to is the 1979 party and it definitely wasn’t called “Bunny Fuck."

*****

Steve tells me this was the first event, 1981. And yes, that varies from the "official" Bunnies on the Bayou history of a birthday party in 1979. By the earliest clippings I have found "documenting" which celebration it was, it jumps to 1994 for the "14th annual" party, making a start year of 1980. And 1995 was the 15th.


So, here's my history theory...
There was a birthday party on Easter Sunday in 1979 at an apartment
complex on W Clay. They began having annual parties.
In 1981 a group of friends threw a party on Easter they called 'Bunny Fuck,'
held for several years.
Circa 1984 the first group contacted the second one and got consent
to call their party 'Bunny Fuck.'
The (private) party was held under that name through 1991.
Name changed to Bunnies on the Bayou for 1992,
and the group incorporated in 1995.


jumping to 1986, lots of gaps in media mentions of the party....
but then,...it was a 'private party'

1986

1989

Still the Bunny Fuck Party

1991

By this year they collected food for Stone Soup

Per Jim Taylor, first president of Bunnies (1995-96),
1991 was the first year the event
was held at the Wortham, Fish Plaza,
and it was incorporated in 1995.

1992

I believe the "pre-BFP" referred to Bunny Fuck Party

1993

Bunnies on the Bayou

   

Often, Rich's had after parties in conjunction with the event

1994

      

This clipping (above left), the earliest one I found quoting a 'year'....
calls it the "14th anniversary"....making the first one in 1980

1995

Bunnies was incorporated in 1995

"15th anniversary"....making the first one in 1980

1996

"16th birthday"...so, began in 1980

  

  

   

So the lore from 1996 has it as the 16th celebration...

1997
18th Anniversary

The press from 1997 calls it the 18th anniversary,
how did it gain a year? Per Jim Taylor, prez in 1995-96,
at some time way back they realized the miscount,
and this may be when they corrected it.

   

The Bunnies entry in the Pride Parade

1998

19th anniversary

pass cursor over to see back

   

1999

   

above, from 1999 Pride Parade

  

 

2000

   

2001

2002

2003

   

2004

t-shirt

T-shirt images from WearingGayHistory.org

2005

YouTube Video 6 minutes

A search at that site will find more Bunnies videos

2006

nothing yet

2007

2008

below, one of the other events

2009

2010

2011

  

   

Plus link to the article for more photos

2012

   

2013

Plus, Click This Page for many more 2013 photos from this slideshow

2014

2015

and from this point I refer you to the Gallery section of the Bunnies website for many more photos

2016

2017

2018

Click to above article for many more photos

2019

See the Bunnies website gallery for years 2015 through 2019

2020

and for a while now the organization had other fundraising events during the year

     

 

 

alas.....