A Man Invited People To A "BBQ Not Orgy" On Grindr

People who attended his "BBQ not ORGY" event said it was surprisingly wholesome.

A group of men gathered around a barbecue

Chris Bowman, a 61-year-old man in Apex, North Carolina went viral a few weeks ago after he sent out a wholesome invitation on Grindr for people to attend his July 4 barbeque.

The event was Bowman’s fifth annual barbeque. He took to Grindr saying “it’s open to all…men, women, gay, bi, str8, trans, doesn’t matter to me.”

People Went To The "BBQ Not Orgy" And Loved It

Several people posted pictures of Bowman’s invitation on Reddit, Twitter and other social media, causing it to become a viral meme.

One Twitter user shared photos of the exchange saying, “this is my energy.”

Others worried that Bowman would be left alone on his big day.

Thankfully, a few brave souls asked for the address on Grindr and went to the stranger’s house for some free food and a good time.

Matthew Setzer, a 23-year-old who also lives in Apex, was one of those who received an invitation from Bowman. Setzer wasn’t planning on attending the event until he saw that it went viral. So because he was close by, he figured he’d give it a shot.

BBQ Not Orgy - Grindr

“You get a lot of spam and odd messages on Grindr, so initially I just glossed over it and didn’t think much of it,” Setzer told BuzzFeed News. “But everyone was really supportive on Twitter so I thought, ‘Hey, I got the message! I might as well go to this thing.'”

Setzer convinced his friend Mark to attend the event with him, and after a bit of background checking, they were on their way.

He said that once they arrived, they felt comfortable because “everyone just had a positive demeanour.”

Bowman, who was up since 4 am cooking for the event, had a large tent set up in his backyard with a wide array of food.

“There was so much food there,” Setzer said. “He had cooked an entire pig, an entire chicken. He had so much food. There were so many sides, there were vegan options, there was literally everything. It was insane.”

There was also a great mix of people sitting outside, mingling and engaging with each other. According to Setzer, “there were multiple languages being spoken, and we had a great conversation with this one couple about the North Carolina Museum of Art, and the Met exhibits.”

Plus, Bowman’s dog, Chase, was there.

People Went To The "BBQ Not Orgy" And Loved It - Grindr

Bowman told BuzzFeed News that he hosts the barbeque every year to “get all sorts of people across the board together to learn about each other.”

Bowman, a recovering alcoholic, thinks that his annual event allows him to give back to the community and for the community to come together.

He used Grindr to reach out to the LGBT+ community. Bowman identifies as bisexual but said that his barbeque is open to everyone.

Wicked Dublin MPU

“I advertised for the LGBT across the board, and then instead of putting the plus, I put ‘the unknown,’ which got a lot of people’s attention,” he said. “They were saying, ‘the unknown,’ what a cool way to say if you haven’t decided yet!”

Despite the fact that his event became a viral sensation, Bowman reports it was the smallest barbeque he’s had in five years.

Setzer and Mark were the only guests Bowman didn’t know beforehand.

Setzer said that he’s happy he went to the barbeque and that Bowman was “an absolute sweetheart and a really genuine guy.”

“I think one thing that the gay community doesn’t do well is that they alienate the older men,” he said. “So I was like – ‘listen, he’s in Apex, he was cordial enough to invite me, he seems inclusive, worst case scenario I can always leave,’ I just needed to find someone to go with me.”

He’s kept in touch with Bowman since the event and plans on attending the sixth annual barbeque next year.

© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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