Friday, May 20, 2011

Happiest Hour: Deano's Casino

Posted By on Fri, May 20, 2011 at 2:30 PM

This weekend you want to party for a cause. Right? Our happiest hour this week leads us to a special, sometimes forgotten spot called Deano's Casino. This Saturday at the casino you can check out draGAGA, a drag extravaganza celebrating Lady Gaga, with tips and raffle to benefit Pride Foundation. After a high-octane weekend, you can hit Deano's again on Wednesday for Hump Night Theater's magic show, which ends at a reasonable 9 p.m. Happiest of times!

Atmosphere: The cozy, dimly-lit casino is nestled in a gas station travel plaza off Airway Blvd. It’s populated with soft, high-backed chairs made out of sofa material. With a carpeted seating area and pool table nook, it feels like a cross between a friend’s basement rec room and a 1980s hotel lounge.

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What you’re drinking: The specials change from night to night, but often include $5 domestic pitchers. Once a month, on Saturdays, Fuse productions puts on a drag show and, according to Johnny Spritzer—the current drag show prince and Deano’s bartender—vodka is the choice drink. “After a drag show there are usually 4 or 5 empty bottles of vodka,” Spritzer says.

Why you go: Besides the drag shows, Deano's has Wednesday night entertainment from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Aaron Broxterman plays music (including Irish drinking songs), Davol White exhibits his oil paintings, there’s sometimes free pizza, and Evan Disney puts on a magic show—all for $5. Disney calls it Hump Night Theatre, and he uses coins, cards, stuffed bunnies, and other everyday objects to do impressive tricks. Our favorite: Queens in the Kitchen, which involves peanut butter and jelly.

Who you’re drinking with: Regulars. Patrons include karaoke singers (Hump Night Theater is followed by combat karaoke), LGBTQ community supporters, and lovers of magic.

How to find it: 5336 W. Harrier, off the I-90 exit to Airport Blvd.

Happiest Hour celebrates western Montana watering holes. To recommend a bar, bartender or beverage for Happiest Hour, e-mail editor@missoulanews.com.

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