Oregon’s only haunted strip club, which returned in 2022 following a pandemic pause, is back with a much less sinister theme than last year’s apocalyptic take on downtown Portland. This time, you’ll be walking through re-creations of some of your favorite video games with a sexy twist.
The official title of the 2023 version of the ever-changing event is “Exotic Presents Dick and Scott’s Haunted Strip Club Arcade.” The name “Dick” refers to the show’s originator, DJ Dick Hennessy, while “Scott” is the co-owner of Guilty Pleasures Gentleman’s Club, the returning host of the haunted house located at 13649 SE Powell Blvd. The latter also happens to be a video game enthusiast and collector, which made him a perfect partner to help develop the latest motif.
“Unlike last year’s modest R.I.P. City haunt, this year will be much more technologically advanced and dialed in,” Hennessy tells WW. “To accomplish this task, plus the finishing touches of authenticity, I teamed up with my good friend Scott.”
While 2022′s theme sounded anything but “modest,” given its depiction of Portland after dark (graffiti, needles, boarded-up windows, discarded mattresses), it sounds as though the seductive arcade will be more ambitious than ever. Since it began in 2015, the haunted house has constantly switched up its décor: The seven deadly sins were represented in its debut; a mashup of Hot Tub Time Machine and Back to the Future shaped year two, which took people through different eras; and in 2019, 1980s slasher classics inspired not only the walk-through, but also an 11-minute film starring Hennessy and some of the dancers.
“I take a lot of pride in my ability to have my finger on the pulse of Portland and what people in the area like the most (in terms of the themes of my haunted houses),” Hennessy says. “From Back to the Future to Dicky Wonka to iconic ’80s horror movies, I feel like I’ve always hit a home run when it comes to entertaining Portland audiences.”
Pivoting to the haunted arcade means the layout of the experience will be completely different. Visitors enter through a green warp pipe—the kind that are ubiquitous in Mario games—which is going to be located inside the club rather than outside, which should make wait times to get in more comfortable since you’ll not only be in a heated environment but also have the ability to order a drink at the bar.
Once customers are going through the haunt, they’ll spot sexed-up scenes from classic games like Pac-Man, Grand Theft Auto, (somehow?) Tetris and, of course, The Oregon Trail (dying of dysentery was never hotter!).
“The main challenge for me was how do you make iconic video games like Pac-Man and Super Mario Brothers legitimately scary and scary games such as Resident Evil and Mortal Kombat legitimately sexy?” Hennessy adds. “The second challenge for me was that I was going to need additional funding and help to have the production value to pull this off.”
Tickets are currently available to purchase online and include a video game-themed cocktail from Portland’s Shine Spirits. VIP entry gets you a free gift from the Taboo video arcade. The event takes place from 10 pm to 1 am Oct. 19 through 21 and Oct. 26 through 31.