Gentlemen's Clubs Feel The Pinch of Bad Economy

Bob Preston
TAMPA, Fla. — One of of the epicenters for adult entertainment on the east coast is feeling the pinch of these tough economic times.

Tampa, Fla., known for its vibrant selection of gentlemen's clubs, has seen a major slump in profits as business owners and consumers find themselves with less and less disposable income.

Tampa Deja Vu General Manager Eric Terrell said that his profits are down 25 to 30 percent, while Joe Redner, owner of the famous Mons Venus club, cited a similar decrease in returns.

Angelina Spencer of the the Association of Club Executives blamed the downturn on the subprime mortgage crisis, calling it a "trickle-down effect."

"This is resulting in less people going to all sorts of entertainment venues, not just adult entertainment venues," said Spencer, who serves as national executive director for the organization. "Entertainment is one of those luxury items; it's one of the first things people give up."

Dancer Rebecca Massicotte said she used to make as much as $2,200 a week before the economy tanked.

"The regulars we used to have three to four times a week, we don't have that anymore," she said. "They're looking for dance specials."

What's the silver lining in all this? Redner said that the economic crunch has attracted new blood to the industry as many more women are turning to dancing to pay the rent.

"If it's hard to find even a regular job out there, I'll get more dancers," Redner said.