The DNAinfo archives brought to you by WNYC.
Read the press release here.

Boots & Saddle Drag Bar Finally Wins Community Board Approval for New Home

By Danielle Tcholakian | November 11, 2014 8:41am
 Boots & Saddle is planning to move from Christopher Street to Seventh Avenue South.
Boots & Saddle is planning to move from Christopher Street to Seventh Avenue South.
View Full Caption
DNAinfo/Andrea Swalec

WEST VILLAGE — Longtime drag bar Boots & Saddle has finally won support from the local community board to open a new location in the West Village.

The bar, which has been on Christopher Street for four decades, has to find a new home soon because of rising rents. But the first two locations the bar proposed were shot down by Community Board 2's liquor licensing committee based on neighbors' concerns about noise, crowds and children being exposed to drag performances.

On Monday night, Boots & Saddle finally secured CB2's approval for its latest proposed location, the old Actors Playhouse at 100 Seventh Ave. South, which is below street level and has no residents living above.

Co-owners Ron Silver and Rob Ziegler agreed to have three licensed security guards, including one in front of the building, who would be responsible for dispersing crowds and preventing double-parked town cars and cabs from piling up.

Only two residents came to the meeting to oppose the application.

Neighbor Nancy Paisley, who has lived at 36 Barrow St. for more than 40 years, said she does not feel safe walking past Boots & Saddle on Christopher Street.

“They have quite a few patrons who get belligerent, aggressive when they have a few," Paisley said. "In addition to the folks who come out in costume and parade around.

"This is not something that we are comfortable with in this area.”

But the CB2 committee was not swayed, and voted to give advisory support for Boots & Saddle's liquor license application. The State Liquor Authority will make a final decision on the license.

The new Boots & Saddle will remain largely the same, with nightly drag performances emceed by DJs and a smoking area for about eight to 10 people roped off to the side of the entrance, the owners said.

Silver and Ziegler originally wanted to serve food in their new location, but the Playhouse can only accommodate a reheating kitchen.

Assistant manager Michael Richardson wasn't discouraged, however.

“We’re hoping to be able to come up with some unusual ideas,” he said.

Silver said their new landlord wants them to sign the lease by December at the latest, and the owners are eager to get in and start making improvements to the space, including installing equipment and lighting.

When Ziegler emerged from the meeting with signed paperwork, the Boots & Saddle team cheered, high-fiving all around.

“We’re on our way,” Silver said, hugging Ziegler.