Woody's owner discusses clubbing in the Gayborhood

· November 5, 2009, 5:59 am   ·  Updated November 5, 2009, 12:00 am

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No two days at work are ever the same for Tre Rios.

Wednesday night at the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Center, the Queer Student Alliance hosted Rios — the owner of nightclubs Woody’s Bar, Voyeur and Palmer Social Club — to speak about the life of managing clubs that are “open to all lifestyles.”

Rios said she begins a typical night by walking through Woody’s and Voyeur, making sure all is running smoothly.

On any given night, her staff catches several underage people — who, on certain nights are permitted into Woody’s — trying to sneak into Voyeur, which is connected to Woody’s.

“I spot everybody,” she said with a laugh.

For this reason, Woody’s ensures that for every five underage college students there is one adult chaperone.

“I don’t bend the rules on anything,” she said. “I go by the book.”

When asked about the craziest episode she has dealt with, Rios said she once saw someone getting a blow job on the dance floor and a straight couple having sex in the middle of the club. Whenever the male who received the blow job visits Woody’s, Rios jokingly points him out as the guy with the small penis.

Rios also described her experience as a new employee at Woody’s. She said her co-workers were surprised by her presence because a woman had never before worked behind the bar.

The club, which was opened 30 years ago by Bill Wood, began small. It is now one of the most popular nightclubs in Philadelphia and the biggest supplier of alcohol in the state of Pennsylvania.

To perpetuate the club’s reputation and boost marketing, Rios said, bartenders must increase their friends on Facebook by 20 people per week.

Mondays are Karaoke nights, Tuesdays feature “Snacks Parties,” Wednesdays are for college students, Thursdays feature Latin dancing and Fridays and Saturdays are simply “weekend nights,” Rios said.

Each night, DJs are completely in charge of the music and dancers are chosen by dance coordinator Larry Evans.

“[Rios] has a lot of energy,” said Anna Aagenes, co-chairwoman of QSA and one of the event coordinators, “and I really loved what she said about how ... getting your face out there is the best way to promote yourself and your business.”

“I think it’s awesome that she’s a woman,” she added.

Students in attendance agreed that Rios’ talk was both enlightening and entertaining.

“My favorite part was all of the hilarious anecdotes,” College junior Carol Gianessi said, “running the bar and all of the general life stories.”

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