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Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanJumbo's isn't just a strip club... it's an experience.

The 6 stages of a trip to Jumbo's Clown Room

Written by
Erin O'Brien

There are nights you go out, and there are nights you go all in. On Friday, my friends and I went all in to celebrate a pal’s birthday, and we did it at Jumbo’s Clown Room. Just a group of friends having a girls' night. This is a condensed version of the main events of the night, including some helpful tips for your next trip there.

1. I’m too cold to stand in line. Thanks to my Southern California roots, I really can't tolerate temperatures below 72 and sunny. So, when the line wasn’t moving, I decided to see if there was a way around it. As it turns out, you can skip the line if you buy a Jumbo’s Clown Room hat or T-shirt! My friends and I were more than willing to hand over 20 bucks a piece to get inside, and I’m actually quite thrilled about my tee from this LA landmark.

2. Um, now what? Once we were in we went straight to the bar. I like to act like I’m really cool and confident, but I was strangely nervous inside, even though I’d been there before. A little drink to take the edge off was the answer, and the space is tiny so we still had a great view as we waited (and waited) for our drinks.

3. Who are you, kind sir? And why are you handing me a wad of cash? After my friends and I got our drinks, the man next to us at the bar started slipping us ones to tip the dancers. Eventually, he handed me a stack of bills and simply said, "enjoy." Though I second-guessed his intentions at first, he really just wanted us to have a good time (while he watched, of course) and at risk of sounding like a money-hungry gal seeking a sugar daddy, it took our night from a six to a ten in an instant.

4. This is the best. Drink and cash in hand, I was equally entertained by the dancers and the crowd. There were groups of girls, gaggles of guys and a few couples in the mix. The Jumbo’s ladies danced to a huge range of music from sad and creepy circus music in a clown-like get-up, to...

5. Is that Bohemian Rhapsody I hear?! When I heard the familiar intro, I knew we were in for a treat. It was obvious that this particular dancer had a great sense of humor, and I’ve never seen someone shake it quite like she did to this legendary song. It gave new meaning to the lyrics, “is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?”

6. How does her body bend like that? How I do to get mine to do the same? These questions were so pressing to me that I asked one of the dancers this while she was collecting her tips. She was so nice and helpful. She recommended stretching daily and finding a studio that specializes in flexibility. Weekend to-do list, check!

Love the art of exotic dancing? Yeah, you do. Check out the best strip clubs in LA.

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