The Rangers Motor Club [Edit]
The Rangers MC was a mens-only incorporated Motor Club that operated out of Brisbane from 1980 until 2011. One of several similar clubs throughout Australia, the group organised regular runs and social get-togethers in Brisbane and further afield.
The Rangers MC was founded in 1980 by Ian Mann and John Ayerst, along with other likeminded gay and bisexual men. Like other Australian Motor Clubs, the club was modeled along American lines, and featured a Constitution, regular meetings, and a uniform. Members were expected to actively participate in the life of the Club, be it organising Club runs, preparing meals for meetings, and other activities. The Club operated several runs each year, mostly within the South-east Queensland and Northern New South Wales region, as well as other social gatherings including dinners, house parties and an annual Christmas event. The club produced a regular newsletter, Rangers Roundup (earlier Rangers Rag), which was distributed to members.
The club enjoyed initial success with up to 32 active members by 1983. However, ensuing years saw the membership settle to approximately 15 full members and 30 associate members.
The close-knit relationship between Australian Motor Clubs realised several joint runs and members from other Motor Clubs attending events. The Red Rock Run was one such annual event that saw representatives of several Motor Clubs commune together. The Rangers were a founding member of the Australian Club Run Association in 1988, which brought together the major GLBT+ men’s Motor Clubs. Other founding member clubs including The Dolphin MC, Griffin MC, Jackaroos, Melbourne Leather Men, Southern Isle Motor Club, Southern Region Motor Club, and South Pacific Motor Club. These clubs shared the responsibility of hosting an annual National Run.
As well as relationships with local clubs, the Club enjoyed international connections, including a standing relationship with the Rocky Mountaineers MC and the Ohio Rangers MC. Several Rangers members had participated in joint Australian-US runs from the late 1970s, evidencing the deeply-forged friendship between Clubs on both sides of the Pacific Ocean.
After 31 years of continuous operation, the Rangers MC disbanded, due to lack of membership. The closing event coincided with the Club’s 31st anniversary dinner. The Club was one of the last of its kind in Australia to close, and ranks as one of the longest-running clubs of its kind to have operated in Australia.
The Rangers MC logo represented a stylised arrow upon a circular ground, applied over a map of the State of Queensland. The word ‘RANGERS’ was central to the logo on a white ground, diving a brown and green background.
The Rangers MC Consisted of a khaki short-sleeved shirt embroidered with the Rangers MC Logo, worn tucked into jeans. A denim jacket or vest could also be worn, emblazoned with Club patches and badges from places visited. A number of special patches were produced by the club to commemorate significant anniversaries, which were to be worn on a member’s jacket or vest.