MIAMI (TNS) — Burning question answered.
Yes, you can get a lap dance during the age of coronavirus.
If you feel so inclined to pop in to one of a handful or so strip clubs that have reopened in South Florida, this service is currently being offered.
While a lap dance may not seem to be an activity that adheres to social distancing, done, um, properly, it is currently allowed.
Deputy Mayor/Budget Director Jennifer Moon says the dancers must suit up accordingly, as in wear proper PPE such as a mask or facial shield as well as gloves. Clients must wear masks as well.
The guidelines for a lap dance are the same ones applied to getting a massage, says Moon.
In June, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez announced massage parlors, as well as gyms, tattoo places and dance studios could reopen after months of a coronavirus shutdown.
A week or so later, strip clubs entered into the equation. Moon says that a handful of owners submitted safety plans to the county that were approved, including ONE Gentlemen’s Club, The Body, Goldfinger, Bare Necessity, Miami Divas and Booby Trap.
So called adult-entertainment plans reviewed by the Miami Herald show that the clubs, operating at limited, 50% capacity, will now feature temperature checks at the door, hand-sanitizing stations throughout, proper signage/markings, frequent cleanings and mandatory masks for all.
Booby Trap’s proposal, for example, says the club will “enforce the limitations on gatherings within the premises by not allowing any congregating of customers and/or staff that exceed the applicable limits and by adhering to restaurant seating regulations.”
Because bars are not able to open yet, BT management is sitting people at tables six feet apart with a maximum of four per party. Signs will be placed at the bathrooms and front entrance so you know how far to stand back.
“Staff will wear masks at all times and guests will be required to enter the premises with a mask and to only remove their mask while consuming food and drinks at their tables,” the plan continues, adding “high touch points” will go through frequent cleanings.
As for bathrooms, expect wait times for entry as well as stalls and sinks to be cordoned off. Attendants will be on hand to ensure six feet separation. Water fountains are a no-no, and you can’t get water at the bar, because bars are not open, period.
So how’s the grand reopening process going so far?
“Inspectors are actually going in and checking and making sure people are following the rules,” said Moon. “They’re making sure rules are followed with PPE, cleanings, all of it.”
The official admitted that a lap dance is intimate, but until a clubgoer or employee gets COVID-19 and a venue is shut down, stripping is happening.
“Close contact is permitted if both the dancer and the person are wearing the right PPE,” she said. “It’s the same as what is required for someone who is giving a massage. These business owners are very aware of what the guidelines are. They send me a plan and we have many conversations back and forth. And they know if there is a violation, they will be shut down.”
While this sounds surreal in the COVID-19 era, another burning question remains: Will the people come?
A promoter who wished not to be identified said that the thrill of going to strip clubs has faded, and he really doesn’t know when or if the popular pastime can be a thing under the current circumstances.
“I know a guy who used to drop a mortgage at the clubs. But these days it has a different vibe. You’re there for the beauty, you don’t want to see half a face. The scene has definitely changed.”