In 2000 a Gay and Lesbian Center use to be across the street from the
Bijou. A straight African American man owned the bar and it wasn't
doing very well. His friends told him he should make it a Gay and Lesbian
bar because of the Center across the street. The problem was he didn't know
any of the community. A woman I knew, knew Aaron the current owner
and she introduced us. He asked if I was willing to manage the bar and flip
it to a Gay and Lesbian bar. It took about 6 weeks to make the commitment
because I was currently an Engineer of 16 years with 2 children and a granddaughter.
I continued working as an engineer and a manager of the
bar working 70 hours a week for 2 1/2 months. The opportunity came to
buy it in January 2001.
My family is very active in the business.
My parents are partners. We consider ourselves the
"CHEERS" bar of the gay community where everyone knows your name.
Our clientele consists of middle age working class with a very diverse
group on Fridays and Saturdays joining us for DJ dance nights.