For a year and half now, a private swingers club called Club 2250 has been operating at 20 Dalhousie St. at the corner of Brant.
This establishment – better known to students as the Rodeo Bar & Grill – is closed on weekends for the members of Club 2250. The Rodeo (a bar frequented by many Laurier students during the week, especially karaoke Tuesdays) is rented out by the owner of Club 2250, Jerry Van, on Friday and Saturday nights.
Len and Sherry Richter, 68 and 44 respectively, are private music teachers from Hamilton who have been swinging together for over eight years and are members of Club 2250.
The couple explained that sex does happen on the premises, but in back rooms, away from the bar area.
“There are two mattresses in every room and sometimes you’ll go into a room with another couple. We usually pick one with the curtains, we usually leave the curtains open. Anyone who wants to join us, we’ve had that … and all of the sudden all six of us are going at it,” said Sherry.
Len (also an actor in commercials for Rogers and Ancestry.com) and his third wife since 2007, Sherry, believe that the lifestyle they joined eight years ago has brought them closer together: “The bond is much stronger now than before [swinging],” said Len. He believes that the promiscuity of their relationship is acceptable because they are engaging in polyamory activities together.
Sherry believes that their success towards swinging is through communicating with each other. “Open communication is the key, you have to keep talking.”
Amanda Mitchel, a bartender at the Rodeo, has been working the swingers’ nights for several months.
“They’re all getting naked, giving head and everything else. Right there [in the backrooms],” said Mitchel. “There are rooms in the back with beds.”
Mitchel said that although it took some time, she is “used to it now.” She is also given the option of choosing whether or not to serve in the back room.
“Everyone is really respectful,” said Mitchel
Chris Gonzowski, a business professional, moved to Canada from the US in 2008. At the time, he had been married for 23 years.
“My ex-wife now, felt she wasn’t sexy or attractive anymore and our sex life sucked. So we ended up coming to the clubs and all of the sudden she found out she was pretty damn sexy,” said Gonzowski.
“For a year-and-a-half we had fantastic sex, everything was going great. [Then] she ended up running off with some Scottish guy she met at the club.” Gonzowski is however unbothered by the divorce as he stated that they had been growing apart. Gonzowski has no animosity with the lifestyle and continues to attend Club 2250: “I like the openness, the atmosphere, there’s no jealousy.”
As for the others that attend the club, Mr. Richter says all different walks of life are part of the lifestyle: “All ages [21 and over]… doctors; dentists; lawyers; labourers; maintenance people. From one end of the scale to the other.”
Sanitation is an obvious concern with a club like this. Jeff Cowal is the Manager of Environmental Health and Emergency Precautions at the Brant County Health Unit. Cowal has had meetings with Van, whom has complied with Ontario Food Premises Regulations. “The owner has been great [at following the Health and Protection and Promotion Act],” said Cowal.
“They provide condoms, towels, clean sheets and cleaning services to their members,” said Cowal.
Van said that he has had over 15 000 people go through the club since he first founded the private club over a decade ago. “We haven’t had one fight in all that time,” said Van.
“The swingers’ culture is growing,” said Van. Van finds it hypocritical that the majority of people who have had problems with his club are people that have affairs. “Swingers’ are in a monogamous relationship, they don’t cheat because there are no secrets.”