By Brad Lopez
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B-52 Billiardsdropped a bomb on its employees last week when it announced that the club at 1920 Market Street would be closing for good as of this past Monday. One bartender complained to Club Scout that he was given about 48 hours' notice that his mixology job was being nixed. Ouch.
Despite a halfhearted attempt at a kitschy name change to B-52 House of Booze a few months ago, the venue -- including the second-floor, hook-up-central dance room known as Red Monkey -- never managed to renew its hold on the sequins-and-heels LoDo market, which is down considerably from a few years ago. Maybe it was those awful dance mixes of "Immigrant Song" and "Smells Like Teen Spirit" that did the club in -- or that girl in the bathroom yelling "You fucking bitch! Where the fuck you at!" on her cell phone.
The owners declined any further comment.
Two weeks earlier, Tiki Boyd's -- the short-lived plastic paradise located inside the Ramada Inn at 1150 East Colfax Avenue -- hit the chopping block, when the troupe of enthusiasts who'd outfitted the hotel bar as a faux Polynesian fantasy decided to take their bamboo curtains and head elsewhere. "Basically, the manager and the owner were obsessed with money and didn't care at all about tiki culture or what we were trying to do," explains former bartender Brian Clark.
The Ramada hasn't given up on tiki entirely, though; it's turned the bar into the Denver Tiki Lounge, complete with tiki drinks but minus the vintage decor that tiki authority Boyd Rice took with him. (For more information, go to denvertikilounge.com.)
Meanwhile, Clark, Rice, drink mixologist Lorin Partridge and a few Modern Drunkards are actively seeking a new spot where they can bed down and spread their tiki love. "The old location was like tiki lite," Clark says. "We'd rather have our own bar where the profits went back into it, and not into someone's pocket. It will be the official Modern Drunkard bar, which the other location never really was." Stay tuned at www.tikiboyds.com.