Bachelorette Party Article

Here's an interesting article shared at the Washington Post HERE:

Wet, a gay male strip club in the rough Navy Yard section of Southeast Washington, has become an unlikely hot spot for women, whether on the weekend bachelorette-party circuit or for a midweek girls' night out.

This is a club where up to five men strut on the bar like models on a catwalk and dangle from pipes attached to the ceiling. From time to time, they stop at the end of the U-shaped bar, fire up the overhead shower and, well, get wet. They're all naked all the time, except for their socks, bulging with money, that act as tip jars.

Some of the bachelorette groups, obviously visiting Wet for the first time, look displaced and very uncomfortable. They are easy to spot, glued around a table with their pre-party sex toys, and the bride-to-be dressed like she expected to be taken to Polly Esther's. "This was not my idea," one adamantly confessed to me, as if I were her mother and caught her in the act.

Other parties get in the spirit quickly. One bachelorette bridesmaid I met at Wet says that she called Camelot, a female strip club in the District, and asked for recommendations for the best place to take a bride-to-be. "They said that this was a gay club, but they also said that the hottest men in town work here. I think I'd agree."

Women tend to warm up once they realize that the strippers are ready to entertain them, too. If you fancy a specific performer and slip a little something in his sock, he'll come down and talk to you as soon as he takes a break. As long as you're paying, he might even tell you that all of the talent aren't necessarily gay.

Wednesday is amateur night, where non-professionals strut their stuff, hoping to win the $200 cash prize. Some start the night with their shorts on, but by the end of the night, they're showering like the weekend pros. This pageant is hosted by a drag queen, and the winner is chosen by applause.

Women in the audience on amateur night look a little green to the scene themselves. Most are there to cheer for a competing friend. They are dressed hyper-hip, decked out in black, glitter and platforms. They stick out among the more casually dressed men; however, their over-the-top enthusiasm mirrors their over-the-top dress.

Despite the eye candy and fun competitions, bear this in mind: In order to enjoy a Wet experience, you have to be comfortable with certain things. The neighborhood is tough; you will see men hitting on other men; and there's only one bathroom, which is co-ed. Graphic gay porn videos play on TVs that line the walls, but the live entertainment is just dancing, not sex shows. Big warning, though: Some of the dancers may get aroused during their performance.

Also remember that, as a woman at Wet, you might feel like a fish out of water. This club was not designed with women in mind and though you will find women there on any given night, they are definitely in the minority. The club has seats for roughly 100 people, and on weekends, when the bachelorette parties are out in force, about 10 to 15 percent of the crowd is female. On other nights, though, it's less than that.

Performers and younger members of the gay community don't mind women adding diversity to the crowd. "I have no problem with it," says Tommy, a twentysomething patron of Wet for about six years. "I love coming here because there's something for everyone." However, older gay men do have some reservations about going co-ed. For them, Wet is an anonymous place they can go to relax; they don't want hordes of women invading the club nor do they want to feel like freaks on display. Still, women are not outwardly discriminated against. If anything, the younger crowd is pretty welcoming.

So yes, women do go to Wet, and most seem to enjoy it. "But a little goes a long way," says Rachel, a former Tracks regular and a periodic patron of Wet. "You have to know what you're getting into; but I do think that it's neat to be at the bar getting a drink and then have this beautiful naked man come walking by. I wouldn't come here every night, but Wet is a good, fun, trashy place to go."

– April Umminger