SIRenity For All: Booming campground announces new concept

In the six years since Dennis Duncan and Michael Dekeyser opened their all-male, clothing-optional campground an hour outside of St. Louis, it’s grown exponentially, attracting 4,300 unique visitors from all 50 states and multiple countries.

With 62 acres, 26 lodging options and more than 100 RV sites including 70 seasonals and 60 tent sites with electricity, SIRenity is on a trajectory to become one of the largest gay campgrounds in America. Many St. Louis guys visit “the Farm” in rural Sullivan, Missouri, every weekend during the warmer months to swim, lounge, celebrate and socialize, monitoring their 12,000-strong Facebook page for the latest events and community announcements.

Now the campground is about to grow — with a new option for a clothing-required, truly inclusive campground for the entire LGBTQ community, including families.

“Michael and I began the journey in 2018 to build and open a campground in Missouri to offer a product that didn’t currently exist to the degree of our vision,” says Duncan. “We envisioned ourselves as a community-minded brand that made it part of its culture to be inclusive and affirming to men and male identifying persons. Our goal was to create a space where people could freely express themselves in a safe and loving environment; at one with nature and others of like spirits. One of our goals from the inception was to do outreach and be more than a business but rather a caring and contributing member of the LGBTQIA+ community. We have done that and are very proud of the way we have supported and nurtured that community spirit.”

“In 2024,” Duncan continues, “we find ourselves in a position of growth and as our business has matured, it’s become clear to us that there are parts and people in our community that we can’t reach and serve with our present business model. Let me state clearly that we will continue our all male/male-Identifying business as-is, but in addition, we are excited to announce plans for a new and exciting business model on the 12-acre parcel of land we acquired next to our existing Farm.”

SIRenity Village is the name for the 12-acre, family-friendly addition. Duncan says it will offer its own pool and hot tub, with the home on the property to operate as a lodge with full kitchen privileges for guests.

“We will be adding cabins, RV spaces and tent sites with electric,” he says. “It will be a perfect oasis to relax for gay and lesbian couples, singles and LGBT families to be honored in one of the first such spaces anywhere in the country. We are beyond excited to share this exciting news and will provide more details as they become available.”

SIRenity Village has its own Facebook group to join and follow for the latest developments.

Duncan and Dekeyser have turned a simple patch of Ozark forest into a magical oasis, drawing visitors from around the globe. They’ve hosted food drives to benefit Food Outreach and donated over $3,000 to Doorways St Louis. They also hosted Missouri’s largest Monkeypox vaccine clinic, earning recognition from Franklin County.

SIRenity Farm has become a must-visit for gay men. Now with SIRenity Village, they’re welcoming many more to the campfire.

PTSD Diagnosis

The tall stranger confidently walked into the den where I was resting. He was out of place, but oddly confident and sure of himself. He owned the room.

“I’m looking for Chris,” he said.

The next seconds unfolded slowly, and it was like someone else answered him for me. He then reached into his pocket.

I had never been so certain I was about to die, but he instead looked at his phone and ran out.

A former friend I loved, along with his partner and others they’ve teamed up with, have been at war against me and Kage for months, since they caused a major racist incident at our corner bar and we told the friend he had to move out. In the past five or six months we have dealt with endless harassment, culminating with the sex ad telling men that a woman at our house wanted them to just walk in. Men kept coming. The door handle still rattled five days after the first incident.

This has impacted all aspects of my life. From October 2021 to October 2022, my real estate sales totaled about $2.5 million. From October 2022 to April: zero.

I don’t answer most calls because of all the burner numbers our former friend uses to taunt and insult. I’m distracted and irritable. I manage property, and several times I’ve walked into the wrong unit.

I needed help, and my primary care physician gave me a referral. During my first visit, he noted that may face lit up when discussing the good times with my former friend, and said that I haven’t processed the loss and the betrayal. He also diagnosed me with PTSD, but said I have an great foundation to build from.

The show will go on, and I feel this is a healthy turning point. I have a plan of action.

I appreciate all the kindness we’ve received as we’ve been dealing with all of this. Hard times test bonds and put things into perspective. We will never forget who was there for us.

Howls of the Disgraced

UPDATE: Chuck Pfoutz published a thorough and comprehensive timeline of events here.

Yelling racial slurs at an entire bar is something I consider unacceptable. Nearly all queer bar owners in St. Louis agreed, which is one reason Nate Stickel and Patrick Manary are banned from nearly all of our establishments.

But tribal attitudes run deep, and former bar owner Jim Weckmann has rallied quite the rogues’ gallery against me for my stance. All carrying on and caterwauling like a bunch of idiots.

So be it.

Let him and his ilk howl until they’re hoarse. Jolene Gosha, Sandra Gay, Dean Russell Chavez, all of them. Let them howl.