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Nightclub makes debut tonight

Tim Mutrie

Euphorium – Aspen’s new nightclub for young adults – opens its doors for the first time tonight at 9 p.m.

Aimed at youths between the ages of 15 and 20, the club will feature music from a DJ, billiards, soft drinks galore, free munchies and plenty of space to “hang in a chill environment.” The club is located in the basement of The Rock, a Hyman Avenue Mall nightclub.

Many local youths and adults have volunteered their time and energies toward sprucing up the soon-to-be action central for the valley’s under-21 crowd. Plans are to operate the club on Fridays from 9 p.m. to midnight.

Rick Roche, who manages Euphorium as well as Zele Caffe, said youths must present a photo identification, and pay a $10 cover charge, to enter tonight. Roche said because 15-year-olds don’t have drivers licenses, the rules for them will be a bit different.

“If they’re 16 [years old] and over, they should have an ID, but under 15, they’re going to need something to prove their age,” Roche said. Birth certificates, passports or school IDs are acceptable, he said.

“Down the road we’re going to have photo membership cards, so that will take care of itself,” Roche said. In the meantime, he said the Department of Motor Vehicles in Glenwood Springs sells photo identification cards for $3.

Youths needn’t worry about supervision by old fogies, Roche added, as the nightclub is entirely staffed by twenty-somethings, himself included.

“Most of the staff have experience working with young adults,” he said, “and have other jobs working with kids at the Aspen Youth Center, ACES [Aspen Center for Environmental Studies] and Americorp.

“I’m sure we’ll have a couple police officers walk through at some point in the night, just like they do in the other clubs, but there won’t be adults there typically supervising,” Roche said. He added that a few “adults,” who were instrumental in launching the nightclub, might be in attendance tonight.

All attendees will be required to check their coats and bags, “mainly to prevent people from sneaking in alcohol,” Roche said. In addition, the rear alleyway entrance to the nightclub is the only one people will be allowed to use, he said. The front entrance, which is opposite the entrance to Club Chelsea downstairs, will not be used.

For youths under the age of 18, and thus beholden to the city’s 11 p.m. curfew law, the Aspen Police Department is implementing a “hall pass” system, according to Assistant Police Chief Keith Ikeda. Passes will be time stamped when club patrons who are under 18 leave the club. They will be permitted a reasonable amount of time to grab some grub at one of the nearby late-night eateries on their way home, Ikeda said.

Euphorium will be closed on Friday, April 16; it may open April 23, but beginning April 30, it will operate every Friday night, Roche said.


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