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January 27, 2009
by Ryan Hudson
If you're in Tampa for the Super Bowl, you may be asking yourself, "What am I supposed to do between now and the actual game?" It's a good question, since already Woody Paige is writing columns about Troy Polomalu's hair and it's only Tuesday. Fear not, for Mitch Stacy of the AP has you covered, on where to go to see girls who aren't.
There's Lip Stixx and Centerfolds and the Bliss Cabaret.
There's Diamond Dolls and Bare Assets and the Wild Gentlemen's Club. In fact, there are, by one count, 43 strip clubs in the Tampa metropolitan area — one for each Super Bowl. And the week of Super Bowl XLIII is to Tampa's naughty nightlife what Black Friday is to America's shopping malls.
All the exotic dancing joints have earned Tampa a bawdy reputation — the lads' magazine Maxim even put it on its top 10 list of best U.S. party cities a couple years ago, based mostly on the two score and more night spots to see naked or nearly naked women.
As you might expect though, not all are happy about Tampa's image of "Lap Dance Capital of America."
Travis Claytor, spokesman for Tampa Bay & Co., the tourism bureau, would rather point out other attractions, such as ... Cigars. In the early 20th century, more cigars were made in Tampa than anywhere in the world, by Cuban immigrants. The city retains a rich cigar heritage, and some shops are still rolling them right on the premises.
So, if you want to reek of smoke for days, but don't want to be hassled by going to a strip club, not to worry.
Things are getting so stripper-iffic in Tampa that girls are flying in from all over the country to work during Super Bowl week. Oh, and yes, the Tampa Bay Tribune created an online database for all 43 strip clubs.