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Clarendon’s IOTA Starts ‘LGBT and Straight Friends Social’

Sean Lennon and Charlotte Kemp Muhl perform as The Ghost of a Saber Tooth TigerIOTA Club & Cafe, a music venue and restaurant at 2832 Wilson Blvd in Clarendon, will begin hosting “LGBT and Straight Friends Social Night” every Tuesday.

Starting next week on Aug. 5, patrons 21 and over, gay or straight, are encouraged to come to the cafe for a night of unity. There’s no cover charge — IOTA frequently requires tickets purchased at the door for its Tuesday night shows — and IOTA says it will stay open until 1:00 a.m. or later.

“We’re making a commitment to the LGBT community by making our Tuesdays a weekly social for LGBTs and their straight friends at IOTA,” co-owner Stephen Negrey said in a press release. “Why not? This will be great fun and maybe even productive.”

Negrey and his sister Jane Negrey Inge have co-owned IOTA since they opened it in 1994 as a music venue. Since then, they’ve expanded to serve coffee and espresso during the day and “smasher” sandwiches. The club also announced there would be “Mikey’s ‘Bar A’ Video Wall” to entertain guests during the socials.

“In planning this new weekly event at IOTA,” Inge said, “I’m trying to lighten up and not imagine arty or intellectual rumination, cultural connection and the like.”

Inge said in the announcement that she hopes local LGBT advocacy groups will partner with them in the future.

“It seems the LGBT community and their straight friends might benefit from a reliable place and a routine time to cross-pollinate,” Inge said. “We hope people will come IOTA on Tuesdays to party and meet people working on LGBT events.”

File photo

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