The following interview is with Jacob Palmer, who together with Katie Finn operates PLUSH the Nightclub in Las Vegas, Nevada in America. The interview was done in May 2010.
Coen: Hi Jacob, can you tell us a little about PLUSH the Nightclub, when you started it, what gave you the idea, and if people were supportive?
Jacob: Before we start Coen I want to first thank you for this amazing opportunity you’re giving us. My business partner Katie and I are truly thankful for this forum.
Last year on a trip back from Cali we were toying around with the idea of opening up our own BBW club just for Vegas. It really was just a joke between us. We had talked about it in the past and never acted on it. At the time I had taken some time off from work so I had time to dive in head first.
Kate had a busy schedule but she had all the contacts. So, we thought why not, this might work. Our first party was July 12 of last year and it was a huge hit. We received lots of good press but more importantly, the BBW community welcomed us with open arms.
Coen: So what kind of audience typically attends the club? For example what kind of ages and cultures, and do people come just for fun, or also with the intention of finding love? And also, does your club cater for BHM (Big Handsome Men) as well?
Jacob: Our vision for the club was first and foremost to have a spot where local BBW’s and BHM can hang out, meet each other and get their party on! We get an amazing cross section of people and ages. We serve liquor so you have to be at least 21 but for the most part the crowds are very diverse.
Coen: Something I hear from many people (both women and men alike) which visit the BBW parties here in my country (Holland), is that they have waited for quite a while before finally taking the step to go to such a party. I can imagine this is similar in America.
Can you tell me if this is the case and if so what do you think are the most important reasons for people to hesitate? For example do you think people hesitate because they are unsure of what to expect, or because they fear the same ridicule as in regular clubs, etc?
Jacob: From my own personal experience, I have found that people in the States have been waiting for a club like ours. I feel that’s one of the reasons clubs like ours do so well.
Coen: What kind of music is played at your club and do many people dance?
Jacob: We play a mix of R&B, Hip Hop and Top 40 and our DJ is amazing. He’s real good at feeling the vibe and getting the people on the dance floor.
Coen: Although size acceptance has become more mainstream in recent years, there is still a lot of size discrimination. We are still facing many of the same problems in modern day society as we did in the past. To what extent can you say that clubs like yours have had on people’s self-esteem?
Jacob: Great question and it’s also one of the reasons we opened PLUSH. We feel that our club is a great venue for the plus-size community to get out and shake their butts! We need more clubs like PLUSH.
Coen: Thanks so much for doing this interview Jacob!
Jacob: The pleasure was all ours. Thank you.
Below are photos in a gallery from PLUSH the Nightclub: