Covington Down to Its Last Strip Club
A city once littered with adult-oriented businesses is now down to its last strip club.
Liberty's Show Lounge, the beleaguered, gritty nightclub on Scott Blvd., appears to have closed for good.
Gone are the days of The Pad, Rodney's La Foxx, Club Venus, and so many more, that made Covington a destination across the region for men seeking entertainment from scantily-clad dancing women.
With the closure of Liberty's, only Concepts Lounge, three blocks south on Scott, remains.
Liberty's owner Kim Foran did not return a phone call seeking comment, but the City of Covington confirmed that she did not renew her liquor license and told the city solicitor's office that she was planning to sell the building.
The significance of being down to its last strip joint is not lost on city officials.
“This is just another sign of the transformation of Covington," City Manager David Johnston said. "The people who are visiting downtown these days are attracted to our restaurants, bars, and unique places to shop. The marketplace basically is speaking.”
Gentrification has claimed more than one of these old establishments.
Liberty's sits in the middle of a block seeing significant investment, including the posh Boone Block Lofts and a renovated historic commercial building where the Stephen Gould Corporation located last year. The Pad's space on Madison Avenue is now home to a law firm after life in between as an upscale cocktail lounge - without the near-nudity. The entire block of Fifth Street just east of Madison, which was home to a few girly bars back in the day, is now almost entirely cleaned up with fresh facades and new businesses or prospects.
But for Liberty's to close so unceremoniously is somewhat surprising, particularly considering that owner Foran fought so hard just a few years ago to keep that liquor license when the city and the state came after it.
In 2013, Covington Police raided Liberty's, accusing it of being a prostitution den.
As reported by The River City News at the time, police alleged that the place operated like this:
The prices seemed high for Covington, probably high for anywhere. But these were more than drinks. The "menu" included three options: a $28 drink would allow (suspected prostitute) to join the man at his table where they could enjoy one another's company. A $38 purchase, and (suspected prostitute) would lead the man to the center of the lounge where the pair could enjoy more privacy, and the dancer's hands could slip into the man's pants. For $58, (suspected prostitute) would take the man to a u-shaped booth in the back of the room where no one could see them. That booth was reserved for the big spenders who would be rewarded with (oral sex) courtesy of Cat.
Foran fought the issue all the way to Frankfort, appearing before a board there to plead her case. Ultimately, the state allowed liquor sales to resume at Liberty's, and it did.
As of this week, though, the door at Liberty's Show Lounge was locked and most of the lights were off.
Written by Michael Monks, editor & publisher