Community board gives a big ‘oui’ to Paris Burlesque Club

The Brooklyn Paper
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A shadowy businessman who claims to be involved in security at Madison Square Garden and Citi Field moved forward last night in his effort to open a randy burlesque club on a quiet stretch of Red Hook — even after revealing that his dancers will strip down to their bikinis.

Community Board 6’s Public Safety Committee voted unanimously to recommend a liquor license for Dave Ruggiero and the Paris Burlesque Club that he plans to open this spring on Commerce Street.

Before the vote, Ruggiero addressed local concerns that he plans to open a strip club.

“I can assure you this is not going to be an adult establishm­ent,” he told the committee. “There aren’t going to be stripper poles or runways.”

In fact, he said, the dancers will only strip down to bikini bottoms. There will also be live jazz, comedians, mimes and jugglers.

The would-be club owner also promised residents that he would sound-proof the grocery-store size venue, prohibit anyone under 25, and hire a security guard “with a background in law enforcement; not just some big goon,” to keep away riffraff.

But some neighbors — who complained of noise from nightclubs operated by previous ownership — said they thought Ruggiero was all talk.

“We’re getting jerked around,” neighbor Christopher Gruning said after the vote. “I am not happy.”

The venue was once a jazz club called Red Hook Blue and later became a concert hall with live rock music and barbecue.

Trouble began in 2008, when the space was renamed Hello Brooklyn and was operated by a dance party promoter, who was arrested for selling booze without a license. Neighbors say he also packed the space beyond capacity.

Ruggiero has no affiliation with past owners, though he said that he has “run security” for Club Avalon, The Park and Ruby Lounge in Manhattan.

“You seem sincere,” neighbor Bill Sullivan told Ruggiero. “But so did the old operators; they ‘yes-ed’ us to death and now we need some kind of assurance.”

But Ruggiero did get support from committee members, including Lou Sones, himself a bar owner.

“This will only bring the neighborhood up,” Sones said. “This is as reasonable as an establishment like this can be.”

Paris Burlesque Club will have a maximum capacity of 190 and be open until 4 am on weekends.

Community Board 6 will vote on the issue at its next full board meeting at John Jay HS [237 Seventh Ave. between Fourth and Fifth streets, (718) 643-3027], Feb. 9 at 6:30 pm.

Updated 5:22 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Soured from Red Hook says:
Red Hook desperately needs a venue for mimes and jugglers. No wonder the previous two ventures never made it.
Jan. 25, 2011, 7:34 am
Local from CWFD says:
"not going to be an adult establishment" But no one allowed under 25? Exactly what kind of "juggling" are we talking about here?
Jan. 25, 2011, 9:19 am
nick from BK says:
if you cant open this up in red hook then BK is in a sorry state. Ball juggling is a serious art form
Jan. 25, 2011, 10:30 am
Henry from BH says:
"A shadowy businessman who claims to be involved in security at Madison Square Garden and Citi Field . . ."

Seems like your reporter might have called MSG and Citifield and verified rather than reporting the person's "claim."
Jan. 25, 2011, 10:57 am
Bear from Park Slope says:
Support from Lou Sones? The same halfwit that tried to shut down Union Hall? Hilarious! I love this town!
Jan. 25, 2011, 11:11 am
jonb from red hook says:
seeing how there isn't a single legal residential unit on commerce between richards and comumbia sts, i don't understand what local residents Bill Sullivan and Christopher Gruning are in such a huff over. it's exactly the kind of place you should site a nightclub.
Jan. 25, 2011, 11:15 am
jane from sunset park says:
i wish i knew what this is all about. the font is too small for me to read it.
Jan. 25, 2011, 1:33 pm
get real from rh says:
when cruise terminal first got approved i remember the police precinct captain saying that prostitution and stepped up drug dealing would surely folo...he didn't mention "juggling venues" but i wonder...who does ruggiero say his clientele will be? locals? or brooklyn tunnel drive-bys?
Jan. 25, 2011, 1:58 pm
Fred from South Brooklyn says:
Lou Sones did not try to shut down Union Hall. That was Jon Crow.
Jan. 25, 2011, 2:12 pm
InTheSlope from Park Slope says:
Trade ya Ratner's crappy arena for the strip joint!!!
Jan. 25, 2011, 7:24 pm
VitoB from Carroll Gardens says:
"shadowy"? what boob editor allowed that in with nothing to support? This is sh*t reporting at its finest.
Jan. 25, 2011, 8:29 pm
Rebecca from Greenpoint/Williamsburg says:
Seriously, the reporting was a bit far stretched to make this such a "big" issue. It's a harmless Jazz and Burlesque club. If anything it will class up the neighborhood. I've gone to tons of events around the City that were Jazz & Burlesque based and the patrons are very nice people, generally with money, who like to dress up and go out for a night on the town. And for the reporter's information, Burlesque doesn't mean NAKE GIRLS...maybe he should Wiki it before trying to write about it.
July 1, 2011, 10:32 am

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