By Matt Bennett
In between LSU’s campus and downtown stands the Spanish Moon, the last bastion of the hallowed ‘80s Night in Baton Rouge. Looking more like a set from the “Thriller” music video than a bar, The Spanish Moon began its long tradition of a standing ‘80s Night on Thanksgiving night in 2000.
“It was probably like 25 people originally,” says longtime Spanish Moon bartender Adam Planche. “It was very small, mostly people that worked at the Barnes & Noble.”
Over the years, ‘80s Night grew from a few bookstore employees to hundreds of passionate, neon-clad enthusiasts dancing their asses off every Thursday night. But, thirteen years after the Thanksgiving night that started it all, August 1, 2013 marked the final installment of the local cultural phenomenon – until now.
“People were always asking about it like when are you going to do that again?” explains Planche. “People missed it, so we decided to bring it back.”
Last Thursday, at Spanish Moon’s new monthly edition of ‘80s Night, Mr. Fabulous, the glittery icon that has come to symbolize ‘80s Night at the Spanish Moon, was back in action. Glitter shook off his sparkly outfit when he walked like an Egyptian; he stopped dancing if and only if someone needed a helping hand getting down from the stage or when a pack of girls wanted his fabulous self in the center of their group selfie. And, he never wears the same outfit twice.
“I have probably about fourteen huge Rubbermaid’s in storage full of costumes,” says Mr. Fabulous. “I didn’t want to just duplicate, I wanted something different, crazy and if I’m like driving down the road and I see something weird and it inspires me, I’m like I got to make something like that.”
For years Mr. Fabulous and countless others lived for 80’s night. Thursday night meant dressing up. It meant getting low to the floor during “Blister In The Sun,” telling that special someone “I Want You To Want Me,” and singing with 2 A.M. drunken conviction Prince’s “Purple Rain.” Luckily, the new monthly edition of 80’s Night lies in legendary hands.
Adam Planche still serves your favorite drinks from behind the bar, Mr. Fabulous still glistens on the dance floor and new DJ’s Goshzilla and Ze Idolist, in their pink Save Ferris and Star Wars t-shirts, spin all your favorites ‘80s songs but with a twist.
“We’re not trying to like recreate ‘80s Night in its hay day because that would be ridiculous to try and hang on to something that’s already had. But I think that we can take that sort of spirit and we can honor the past with it while moving forward,” explains Stephen Thibodeaux (DJ Goshzilla).
“It was my first love in Baton Rouge. This bar, the atmosphere the music, yeah, I fell in love,” says Ryan Bergeron (DJ Ze Idolist).
Luckily for you, The next Spanish Moon ‘80s Night is Friday, October 30. For more information check out the events Facebook page here.