Club Zoo makes its return to Pittsburgh's Strip District
By Chris Ramirez
Published: Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, 8:58 p.m.
Attention under-21 party-goers: Club Zoo is coming back to the Strip District after its one-year road trip to Harmar.
The prodigal dance club will reopen Saturday in the same three-level 20,000-square-foot warehouse-style location it once occupied — at 1630 Smallman St.
Coming with it are its high-energy dance music, cache of wall TVs and light shows.
“Our Twitter feed crashed a couple times. The anticipation is through the roof,” says Chris Firman, the club's director of operations. “We're happy to be coming back to the Strip.”
Club Zoo is owned by the Firman family, which has owned or managed a number of other venues, such as the Trib Total Media Amphitheater at Station Square, and Static dance club and Terror Town, both in the Strip District.
The under-21 club first opened in the Parkway Center Mall in the 1990s and moved to the Strip District in 2004. It moved to Harmar in January 2011, occupying an 11,000-square-foot, multi-level building on Freeport Road that once housed former hotspots “Space,” “Club Oxygen,” “Jetz” and “W.P. Nix.”
The Harmer location had its pluses, including the largest dance floor for miles and free parking.
In the end, its biggest drawback was its location. Much of Club Zoo's clientele is from Pittsburgh, mainly the South Hills, some 20 to 35 minutes away.
Club Zoo's address may change, but its security measures will not.
It will continue to enforce a strict dress code. Prohibited are bandanas, skull caps, designs shaved into hair, oversized pants or shorts and numbered sports jerseys with team logos.
Up to 15 club managers will rove the club, and each restroom is staffed with an adult attendant to prevent kids from getting unruly.
“We try to be proactive, to make sure problems don't even get a chance to get started,” Firman says.
Becky Rodgers, executive director for the Neighbors in the Strip merchants association, welcomed Club Zoo's return. She says the Firmans did a good job of ensuring safety during the club's last go-around in the area, and that she was confident its security was sufficient this time.
“With any nighttime business, you ask that they be good neighbors to the community,” she says. “The Firmans were good at doing that.”
Club Zoo under-21 dance club will be open from 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Grand opening is Saturday. Details: 412-201-1100 or www.clubzoo.net
Chris Ramirez is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5682 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Friday’s PIAA semifinal football games postponed
- Penguins notebook: Malkin to miss 2nd straight game Saturday
- Steelers notebook: Woodley expects to start Sunday vs. Dolphins
- Traffic tickets — and revenue — plunge in Dallas
- Kovacevic: Keeping faith in Letang is simple
- Steelers rookie RB Bell gets respect from teammates, foes alike
- Ex-Pirate Jones close to signing with Marlins
- Greensburg Diocese decides that Trent Bocan is “no longer superintendent” of Catholic schools
- Former personal assistant says Irish billionaire, former Heinz exec, owes her stocks, money
- Monitor ends bid to force chemo on Ohio girl
- Greensburg man remains hospitalized after crash