I don't want to alarm you, Curious, but in the run-up to last year's Republican National Convention, I saw several news stories that mentioned Tampa, Fla.—yes, Tampa—as the "strip bar capital of America."
Related: Portland Has More Semi-Factual Superlatives Than Any Other City
While grizzled fixtures like myself have been hearing the "most strip bars per capita" statistic about Portland since you were just a gleam in the mailman's
eye, in all these years I have yet to see a citation. (Unless you count
the one I got for indecent exposure during Fleet Week in 1994.)
Could this be one of those titles that every city claims? You know, like "worst drivers" or "most changeable weather" or "smuggest baristas"?
Related: Our Favorite Strip Clubs, from A to Z.
To find out, I headed to Devils Point, where I sat for an hour watching the show and discreetly zapping my genitals with a pocket Taser. Then I went home and
got on the Internet.
The good news: No lesser a light than PolitiFact refutes Tampa's claim. The
bad news: They put Tampa at No. 3, behind Las Vegas and Cincinnati.
Luckily, these rankings are for all adult businesses—and while Cincinnati may
have us beat on jack shacks, according to the Ultimate Strip Club List (TUSCL), their strip-club total is risible.
As a user-maintained reviews site (think Yelp for people whose pants are stuck to their legs), TUSCL may not be comprehensive. Still, it had every Portland strip club I could think of, which is a lot.
Turns out Portland, with one strip club for every 9,578 residents, is indeed the leader among the 50 largest U.S. cities, narrowly edging Tampa at 10,813 and blowing Las Vegas' 33,002 out of the water. Myth confirmed.
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