Even Utah’s snow and ice can’t stop the celebrating as 2008 winds down. Here’s what Salt Lake City’s gay and gay-friendly clubs are doing to send another weird year behind the Zion Curtain out in style.
Area 51: 348 W 500 S
Salt Lake City goth/punk/industrial hot spot Area 51 will celebrate the season with three parties. The first is an 80s Xmas Ball held on Christmas Day. DJ Radar will spin for this “80’s flashback party,” which includes $4.50 Vodka energy drinks, and, in the truest sense of the ‘Me decade,’ presents for everyone. Although the party kicks off at 9:00 p.m. the club will be open before that time. Cover charge is $3 before 10:00 p.m. and a mere $5 after. Ladies get in free before 10 as well.
The club will host Fetish Ball: Dominance & Submission on Dec. 27. Doors open early at 8:00 p.m. and partiers, of course, are asked to dress to their fetishes.
The club’s “legendary” New Year’s Eve Party will kick off Dec. 31 at 8:00 p.m. with six DJs spinning on both the club’s floors. Upstairs DJ Jeremiah, DJ Darren Weight, DJ Radar and DJ Himself will tag-team the night away with alternative, electronica, dance, 80s and request music. People who like their music to be a little darker should head downstairs where DJ Evil K and DJ Viking will play industrial, gothic and Darkwave music. Along with music to satisfy all tastes, the club will also offer drink specials and passes to come to the club for free on the following Friday. There will also be $1000 in cash and prize giveaways and, of course, a cash cannon.
Because the New Year’s Eve party has sold out in previous years, club owners advise partiers to arrive early (doors open at 8:00 p.m.).
Club Bliss: 404 S W Temple
Dance club and bar Bliss will put the X in Xmas with its Bad Santa Party on Christmas Eve. Hosted by Masood and Orbet Entertainment, the naughty celebration will have tunes spun by DJ Juggy and DJ Latu and photos with the club’s own bad Santa taken by ThatGuyGil.com. To reserve VIP tables and bottles or to make party reservations, contact Riley at (801) 860-7180.
On New Year’s Eve, the club will turn up the heat with its all-male review.
Club Try-Angles: 251 W 900 S
Club Try-Angles’ food drive will run up through Dec. 20, and bar-goers are asked to bring a cans of nonperishable food and toiletry items to be given to the Utah Food Bank or the Utah AIDS Foundation Food Bank. On the final day of the food drive, club owner Gene Geiber will donate all the cash in a donation jar by the till to the two organizations along with a $500 donation split between the club and QSaltLake.
On Dec. 24 the popular bar and club will hold its annual Christmas Eve party. Unfortunately, said Geiber, Santa Claus, the night’s guest of honor, will probably not be able to make it this year.
“He’s taking the year off,” he explained.
The club will be open Christmas Day and will offer revelers a selection of light foods such as deep fried poppers and other hors d’oeuvres.
The club will also hold a New Year’s Eve party featuring a buffet dinner and Geiber’s take on a honey baked ham in what the owner calls “the classiest New Year’s Eve party in town.” Along with classy, the party is also so popular that it is reservation-only.
“If they don’t have their reservations, they better hurry!” Geiber said, laughing.
Club Gossip: 579 W 200 S
Home to diva extraordinaire Nova Starr and her troupe of lovely girls, Club Gossip will hold its Xmas Wish party on Dec. 19 complete with a hunky Santa Claus, sexy Go-Go elves and a birthday bash for DJ Naomi, who has been spinning tunes for 15 years. Nova promised there would be some surprises for Naomi but in true diva fashion would not reveal what those would be. The party, she said, is also an opportunity to give back to the community: partiers who bring a new toy for the club’s Toys for Tots Drive will get a discount on their cover charge.
On the day after Christmas, Gossip will hold Holiday Wish, featuring tunes by DJ Naomi and Tony Marino, the club’s unusually hot bartenders, and Nova’s special “Last Dance of 2008” at midnight.
Though Holiday Wish won’t technically be the last dance the club will see this year. On New Year’s Eve Gossip will host the Black and Blue Leather Masquerade featuring performances by Nova and her girls and the appearance of “two huge porn stars.” When asked who the hot men will be, Nova said that she couldn’t give details just yet.
She did promise, however, that the party would be “huge and fun,” and the club’s cover charge would be lower due to the economic downturn.
“We’re trying to throw an amazing New Year’s Eve party for people to help them forget that we’re not where we want to be now [economically speaking],” she said.
As the name of the party may indicate, attendees are invited to dress in black and blue.
Jam: 751 N 300 W
The Marmalade District’s newest gay club will hold four parties this holiday season. The first is the Winter Avalanche Party on Dec. 19. Sponsored by SkiOUT Utah and featuring JAM Master Mike Babbitt, this party will have no cover charge. Club doors will open at 9:00 p.m.
On the following day Jam will hold its Sexy Santa Party where patrons can get their photos taken with Santa. Sponsored by Mischievous Pleasures, this party will feature DJ:K. There is no cover charge before 10:00 p.m.
Although the club will be closed on Christmas Eve, Portland ‘s songwriter of the year Tyler Stenson will perform at 9:00 p.m. on Dec. 23 ($5 cover charge), and the club will hold its New Year’s Eve Bash on Dec. 31.
Paper Moon: 3737 S State St
Salt Lake City’s only lesbian club, the Paper Moon will be open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day for “people who don’t have a place to go” to celebrate the holiday, said employee Rachel Gibbons.
Doors will open at 6:00 p.m. on Christmas Eve (which falls on a Wednesday this year) for an all-request night featuring dollar drafts and two dollar well shots, which cover such drinks as tequila, vodka and beer.
“We drink a lot of tequila on Wednesdays,” joked Gibbons.
The club will open again on Christmas Day at 6:00 p.m. for a karaoke day complete with dollar drafts. There is no cover charge before 8:00 p.m. After 8:00 p.m. the cover charge is $2.
On New Year’s Eve, the club will also open at 6:00 p.m. The festivities will include a live DJ and door prizes and giveaways, such as t-shirts, hats and trip for two offered by club owner Toni Fitzgerald.
“It could be anywhere from Italy to Florida, it’s basically winner’s choice where they go,” said Gibbons.
The cover charge for New Year’s Eve is $8 for members and $10 for nonmembers.
Trapp Door: 615 W 100 S
Located behind the Trapp, the Trapp Door will be one of the hardest partying clubs this holiday season. On Dec. 18 it will hold its second annual Dance Evolution Award Show which is sure to be a hot spot for club regulars and newbies alike. This formal event honors the year’s biggest parties at the club and will feature live performances from New Wave band The Hotness, garage band Secret Sobriety and alternative/indie Sex on the Run. Resident DJ/DC will host.
On Dec. 20 DJ/DC and JSJ will break out the pop music and requests on the club’s main floor and indie and electroclash in the back lounge for “Dancing in a Winter Wonderland. Legendary drag queens Systeen and Raven will also give special holiday performances.
Goodtimes Karaoke will hold its final monthly karaoke championship on Monday, Dec. 22 with cash prizes and the Trapp Door will be open on Christmas Eve for its “Xmas Eve Speakeasy.”
On Christmas Day, the club will also be open for its “Dance Evolution Christmas Explosion,” which the club calls “Salt Lake’s craziest dance party.” For re-gifters in the city, the evening will include a white elephant gift exchange.
For die-hard partiers who aren’t tired after all of that, there is also “Last Call ‘08” on Dec. 31. The final party of 2008 will feature all of the Trapp Door’s resident DJs spinning tunes into next year. Doors open early at 8:00 p.m. and the $10 cover charge kicks in at 9:00 p.m. (VIP passes for the evening are $25). Lovely ladies Systeen, Raven, Coco and Shenka will perform and the new year will start off with a literal bang at midnight, when the club’s cash cannon explodes with $500 in cash. Revelers are encouraged to come early to this party, as the floors will fill up fast.
W Lounge: 358 S West Temple
Hip Indie music club W Lounge will hold its Christmas bash on Dec. 27 to celebrate regular DJ K Pharaoh’s birthday. The night will feature 10 years of house music hits from the U.S. and the U.K. spun by K Pharaoh, DJ Purple and Dan Dixon. The club will be open from 9:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m. and there is no cover charge before 11:00 p.m.
On New Year’s Eve the club will hold the dance party “The Get Down meets Indie Disco” featuring Roksteady, Flash & Fire and indie DJs Jace & Zack. There is no cover charge before 11:00 p.m. and a $5 charge after. There will be a champagne toast at midnight and partiers are invited to dress up … or not.