Saturday, December 21, 2013
The Clubs: Athens Strip
photos: frame grabs from Mars Needs Women.
The club opened in 1966 and closed in 1977, reportedly because of damage from an arson fire.
Athens' Strip danced into infamy when it was the featured in grade-Z filmmaker Larry Buchanan’s most memorable movie, Mars Needs Women, filmed in 1967.
In one scene a Martian ogles stripper Bubbles Cash as she dances on the Athens Strip stage, selecting her as a candidate for alien abduction in an attempt to increases the female population of his home planet. This scene preserved images of Athens Strip’s exterior and interior for all eternity, and hopefully saved the Martian race.
Previous to this the Athens Strip made some ink in the Dallas press when a lion named Blondie, who was part of an act by an Athens Strip dancer who used the name Patty Pleasure. The city claimed that the lion was improperly caged and in violation of a new Dallas wild animal ordinance. The defense was that the lion was too fat and lazy to harm anyone. Ms. Pleasure is quoted as saying “Blondie is gentle but not quite as gentle as a pussy-cat…”
Athens’ Strip was in the news again in the 1975, although only in passing. Diana King, one of the clubs dancers, did a show and tell strip-tease at the Richardson Unitarian Church in front of a congregation that included children. This made national headlines but the event’s most lasting effect was being referenced in church newsletters as an example of a typical Unitarian service.
The former site of Athens’ Strip is presently occupied by a Chinese restaurant with the unintentionally humorous name New Big Wong.
Post by Joel Parks on the Dallas Historical Society web page “phorum” http://dallashistory.org
How Bad Were They? - Smith Douglas St. Clair (Ivan Stang) - Texas Monthly May 1986
Mars Needs Women movie directed by Larry Buchananhttp://www.imdb.com/title/tt0060672/
Metro Past - The Dallas Morning News - May 15, 1985
Animal Ordinance by James Ewell - The Dallas Morning News – Oct 05, 1966
New Big Wong - The Dallas Morning News - May 22, 1987
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