What happens in Vegas, won’t necessarily stay in Vegas thanks to a local business.
Ottawa’s Plaza Grill and Cinema plans to play host to the Las Vegas Chippendales — spicing up area entertainment by offering residents a taste of Sin City in the Midwest at the business’ Feb. 28 Ladies Night.
“We’ve been trying to step out of the box with other forms of entertainment at the theater to keep it viable,” Peach Madl, owner of the Plaza Grill and Cinema, 209 S. Main St., said. “It’s been fun, and the response was surprising.”
But what might be more surprising than the sold-out event’s response is its audience’s demographics, Madl added. Nearly all of the planned attendees are married women between the ages of 40 and 60, Madl said.
“[The event] went faster than we thought,” she said, adding that 125 tickets sold in a week.
Featuring scantily-clad male dancers, the Chippendales are an entertainment troupe known largely for its erotic dancing and characteristic shirtless costume of a bow tie and shirt cuffs. Created in 1979, the company spans the globe to offer titillating live entertainment for women, its website said.
The ensemble’s expected arrival in Ottawa has been straddled with mixed reviews from area residents — at least on social media. While many seem aflutter by the Chippendales’ prospective performance, others appear to question its appropriateness at an establishment that’s primarily geared toward families.
“Yeah, let’s bring adult entertainment to where we take our kids to watch movies,” Tim Wisniewski wrote on The Herald’s Facebook page.
“I think it is disgusting and inappropriate,” Tami Hernandez added.
Others on the digital forum argued the event is similar to entertainment already offered at the theater.
“What is the difference between this and a rated ‘R’ movie?” Bryce Sessions asked during the discussion. “It’s obviously not for children, so why is everyone freaking out about them performing? It is entertainment and one does have the choice not to go.”
“I like it,” Shirl Ammerman said. “For those of you who don’t like [the Chippendales], it’s just a show.”
In response to those critical of the event, Madl said her business attempts to appeal to a wide variety of people’s interests, citing the theater’s recent stand-up comedian event. As such, Madl said, she thought the Chippendales would be a fun event for those without a Y chromosome.
“It’s not strip teasing; it’s dancing, and they’re recognized because they’re beautiful,” Madl said. “There are movies appropriate for different ages and we serve a broad demographic of people and try to have things people enjoy, and we try to take care of our older people, too. It will make you smile.”