Why don’t more women own strip clubs? Meet Rori Gordon…

Last Thanksgiving I went to visit one of my favorite cousins in Portland, Maine. At dinner she confessed that in her 32 years of living she had never been to a strip club…so I decided it was my job to take her. What happened next sparked this question and interview. The gentlemen’s club in Portland had to be one of the most depressing places I have ever been. The dancers were working so hard for $2 measly dollars from some hairy wharf rat. 

My cousin and I were saying…”why don’t women own strip clubs?” “We’d could run the best club.” I set out to find out why more women don’t own gentlemen’s club, which lead me to the amazing Rori Gordon who owns Billy Dean’s Showtime Cafe in North Bellmore, NY. Here is Rori’s story. Rori kills stereotypes like – are only ‘damaged’ women strippers, why don’t’ more women own clubs, and how difficult has her life been as an unconventional woman? 

Hope you enjoy and keep an open mind. Email me anytime anything: sarah@heyfrase.com 


Response (8)
  1. Grateful Jester

    The stigma that attaches itself to the concept of "Gentleman’s Clubs" being dirty, filthy and deviant places are from archaic times. Today these clubs for the most part are high class lounges where both ladies and gentlemen can relax, eat, drink and be entertained. Like Billy Deans, hundreds of thousands of dollars are spent on the interiors of these places. They create jobs and careers for those who love to entertain and support both business and personal tax bases. Kudos to Rori for being a wise business woman and creating a place where people can go and socialize and support a local business at the same time.

  2. Diane S

    The interview with Rori is great. Rori is a terrific business woman and also a wonderful friend. I’ve known Rori since grade school. I didn’t actually call her a friend back then, she was more of an acquaintance. I do remember, however, even back in the day she was a business woman…selling pumpkins in the Fall. Standing on the corner of a highly traveled highway, in our home town with those pumpkins all laid out for sale for Halloween. She was always coming up with ideas to make a dollar. Now, I am happy to say she’s one of my dearest friends. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Rori in planning a couple of our high school reunions. She’s business all the way! Dealing with a knowledgeable woman in business is always a plus~! Her and partner, Billy Dean run an awesome club … Billy Dean’s Showtime Cafe in Bellmore. I have been there a couple times for their annual Christmas Party and watched it operate. It is run with class and taste. They treat their customers great! I’m sure Rori has been judged many times by a wide assortment of small minded people. Being the trooper she is, she picks herself up, brushes herself off and trudges on. It’s difficult owning a strip club, I’m sure. There is always someone around to point a finger…but with Rori, it’s No Retreat, No Surrender! Thanks for taking interest in Rori Gordon and Billy Dean’s Showtime Cafe!

  3. michael

    Great interview! Before seeing this, I never really gave your inquiry much thought, but as a man, i guess I too, had the presumption of the stereotypical strip club owner being a man or men.
    I, personally like the club and Rori. While every club can be judged differently based upon one’s experience, like she say’s it actually has to be experienced first, before being judged. In her favor, I’ve had nothing but a positive experience there and have met many great people going to her place.
    Going back to your original question, I would say that it kinda makes sense that so few women are in owners in the biz. if you narrow down the facts…how hard it is to even own a private business, make that a properly run club, to run one with a liquor and food license, to run one in a suburban landscape, add dancing girls…I think when one thinks more about how hard it is to do this, and that most owners are men, then the odds for a successful female to be in the same position as males in the same business would make it a very rare case indeed.
    The clearly knowledgeable and intelligent Ms. Gordon understands the business end of things and how to run her club from a practical perspective as well. Something not a lot of club owners understand, given how many clubs (strip and otherwise) open and close on a seemingly regular basis for various problems throughout New York.

  4. Mike Lentini

    This was a great interview Sarah. Billy Deans Showtime Cafe is a great club and Rori runs a clean establishment that most clubs should learn from. People should be more open minded and stop being negative towards a place like Billy Deans.

  5. Costa

    a great and informative interview…good job Sarah…Rori is a confident and awesome business woman

  6. Danielle

    I think this interview was great! I worked for Rori and Billy years ago and shes right ,its a great opportunity for women the questions you asked were perfect Rori couldnt have explained it any better than she did! Strip clubs especially Billy Deans Showtime Cafe really arent what people make them out to be. Like Rori said the majority of us just want to get our bills paid off, or pay for school,Its even a great opportunity for those single moms out there who are trying to juggle everything! Well done Sarah

  7. John k Bush

    Billy Deans isn’t like the old people think of as a strip club. It’s a place go with a Freind and have a Good time and not the joints of the sixties or seventies ! It’s a Place to have Fun, and get entertained !!! Nice Job Rori !!!

  8. Jennifer

    Sarah, this is great! I’ve never been to a strip/gentleman’s club before; honestly I’m one of those people who are afraid that they’re dark and seedy places lol…But like Rori says, maybe I should visit one and find out for myself.

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