333 S.W. Park, 503-241-1153
Friday, Nov. 29
10 p.m.-4 a.m.
Foam. Dancing. Half-naked boys and girls everywhere. No, this is not a strip joint with a plumbing problem – this is Portland’s only all-ages “alternative lifestyle” club, Klub Z. You need not be gay to go there, you only need to be open to being hit upon by a youngster of any gender. But be forewarned, gender is not always apparent.
This Friday night, Klub Z is hosting a “foam party,” adding to your dancing enjoyment with the help of some well-placed foam machines.
Klub Z’s show coordinator, Thomas Christensen, has been a regular at the club for five years, long before becoming an employee. He also holds the title of Thorn XXV, Chance de Valmont. All this, and he is only 18 years old. Klub Z is like a second home to Christensen. “I feel that it is easiest to describe the club as ‘the club’ because it’s been through so many changes. As of now, it is the only all-ages gay nightclub this side of the Mississippi. It provides a place for kids to, not experiment, but experience who they would like to be, to be who they want to be.”
Zig Tognetti founded Klub Z in the summer of 2000 after the downfall of The Edge nightclub. This space has gone through a number of names and numerous owners.
From Mildred’s Palace, Metropolis (no relation to the current nightclub), The City Nightclub, Evolution, and The Rage to Misfit’s Caf퀌� and The Edge, this spot on Park and Stark has been an all-ages gay nightclub for at least 25 years.
The foam party this Friday is only the second to happen at the club. Usually admitting youths 14 and over, Klub Z is allowing only people 18 years and older into the party.
Christensen explains, “The owner would rather have an 18-and-over event because [the foam party] is a more sexually inclined, exotic event.”
What should one expect at this wet and wild gathering? First off, there will be a large number of only partially clothed people. Expect a lot of them. The coordinator was unable to release even an estimate of the number of club goers expected to be at the party, but it is sure to be high.
Attended by resident DJs Jerem-e and Seth, the music will include pop dance remixes, trance, hip-hop, electronic, house and anything else the DJs deem worthy of airplay.
Guest DJ Frankie J (of Panorama) will be spinning as well.
Christensen says that last August “was our first foam party, so we did not know exactly what we were doing.”
“It turned out really great. We had the foam machine pouring from the ceiling to the middle of the dance floor, and people were just bathing in it,” he said.
But what should you wear? “You normally saw the guys running around in swim shorts and the girls in bikini tops and cut off shorts,” he explained. Instead of a coat check, you could “check your clothes at the door.”
Last summer, large garbage bags were provided for the clothes of partygoers. “Take a number, get (mostly) naked,” would seem an appropriate tagline for the party. This is the only 18-and-over foam party you’re going to see in Portland.
Klub Z offers enticing options for the locals every weekend. The club has hosted Latino Night, Fetish Night (much like 21-and-over club Dante’s) and pajama parties, as well as ’80s Night, Disco Night and flashlight parties (where the lights go out at midnight). There are shows put on by brave performers every Friday and Saturday night, as well.
More than just a dance club, Klub Z offers a place for the young gay, lesbian, bisexual and transsexual community of Portland to meet and feel welcome. For Christensen, the club has influenced the way he presents himself to society. “(Klub Z) has allowed me to express who I truly am as a person instead of being hidden like I typically was in teen-age culture.”
If you need a place to be who you truly are, whether it is gay, straight or somewhere in between, Klub Z provides a dance floor where you can be anything you want.