CHEYENNE, Wyo. (KDVR) – Exotic dancers are now getting back to work at a gentleman’s club that straddles the Colorado-Wyoming border.
While some of the property is in Colorado, The Den is technically in Wyoming.
“When they reopened the restaurants and bars in Wyoming, we were super excited because it’s been very difficult for us,” owner Kim Chavez said.
“It’s been horrible to go almost three months without any kind of income,” Kim Chavez’s husband and co-owner Greg Chavez said.
Wyoming has seen significantly fewer COVID-19 cases and deaths than Colorado. The state allowed bars and restaurants to reopen for in-person service on Friday. That includes The Den.
“It was pretty busy,” Greg Chavez said. “People had money to spend, and people were out. I think they were excited to be feeling normal again.”
The Chavez’s say Wyoming has not provided specific information about how many people they are allowed to have inside at once. They still limited it to about 50 customers at a time, which is half of their maximum capacity.
“Business was good. The girls made decent money. It was almost like back to normal — almost. It was almost like a regular Friday or Saturday,” Greg Chavez said.
The Den is one of the first strip clubs in the country to reopen.
“Last night was crazy. We had people from Omaha and Utah, Nebraska, South Dakota. They made the trip,” Kim Chavez said.
While things start to get back to normal, things are also very different inside the club.
“We just need to practice social distancing. We need to make sure that our customers feel safe when they’re here. We need to protect our staff. And just make sure that we’re doing our best to keep everybody protected and safe,” Kim Chavez said.
All dancers and staff must wear masks inside the club.
“As long as I get to work and start bringing in money again I’m okay with it right now,” dancer Jenny Boswell said.
She says the mask makes the job more difficult while on stage.
“We’re on eight-inch heels and obviously a mask sometimes messes with your vision like I need to be able to see where my feet are going,” she said. “In eight-inch heels it could be deadly.”
The Den has also adopted strict social distancing guidelines. No contact is allowed whatsoever.
“We can do the dances on stage, but no lap dances,” Greg Chavez said.
The Den is not requiring customers to wear masks, but they are providing masks to anyone who wants one. Customers are also required to use hand sanitizer before entering the club.
Staff are sanitizing the bar, tables, chairs every time a customer moves. Dancers must use hand sanitizer before going on stage and must sanitize the pole before dancing on it.
“It’s not different than Walmart, Home Depot or any place else that is letting a bunch of people in. My club is safe. We’re following all the same guidelines. We’re taking all the same precautions,” Greg Chavez said.