Once upon a time, there was a bar. Said bar sat in a nondescript strip mall in a semi-suburban neighborhood, its door guarded by burly bouncers in cowboy hats. It was home to a mechanical bull, line dancing lessons and lots of camo. And in what far away land did this bar reside? Why Davie, of course.
Contrary to popular belief, South Florida has a hefty contingency of folks who drive pick-up trucks, listen to country music and don duds from Grifs Western. And on Fridays, they like to gather at Cowboy's Saloon in Davie for a little line dancing and a lot of drinking.
As a former Dallas resident, I drive an oversized, Miami-inappropriate pick-up truck, listen to KISS Country and wear the occasional pointed boot. I do draw the line at cowboy hats (exceptions made for Toby Keith concerts). But with my affinity for western culture, when a friend told me about Cowboy's Saloon, I was down to get 'er done.
We decided to head up on a Friday night - ladies' night. Ladies' night means free drinks (bottom shelf liquor and Bud Select) from 9 p.m. to close, and free entrance for cowgirls. Cowpokes still have to pay, but the $5 cover is so worth the copious amounts of chicks they'll be exposed to.
We arrive early, and the crowd is still primarily dinner guests. The massive space has a front area lined with tables and a main bar, where a PG crowd of moms in American flag jackets and dads in over-sized belt buckles can nosh on rocky mountain oysters, pulled pork sandwiches and baby back ribs. Further back, it lays out into an adults-only club, with a massive dance floor, mechanical bull and pool room.
At 8 p.m., the line dancing lessons begin. Amateurs and almost-pros take to the floor to learn the Boot-Scoot Boogie, the Cotton Eye Joe and the Achy Breaky Heart.
As the evening wears on, the crowds flood in. Some look too young to know country music even existed before Taylor Swift. Most are decked out in plaid shirts, boots, camo caps or cowboy hats, and looks as far from South Floridian as I've ever seen. It's like I died and went to Fort Worth.
Drinks flow freely, and there's a plethora of girls present - unlike a lot of ladies' nights that devolve into sausage fests. There's drinking, digit-exchanging and daisy dukes all around. Oh - and bull riding. Or bull gyrating. And lots of bull falling.
At one point, the DJ spins a set of old school R&B and hip hop tunes, during which, inexplicably, everyone continues to line dance. The dance floor is PACKED - there's barely room for another uncoordinated body to make an attempt at the Electric Slide - so I sit it out.
The later it gets, the more people pack in, girls chugging from mini red Solo cups, everyone singing along to Blake Shelton and guys flirting with the beer tub girls. Btw dudes - they've undoubtedly heard every lame "ride a cowboy" line there is, so good luck with that.
The party ends at 4 a.m., when cowboys and cowgirls stream out into the parking lot, hooting and hollering all the way.
So if you're down to don some western gear, tip it on back (Bud Select, that is) and listen to the likes of Florida Georgia Line - you'll love Cowboy's. I sure did.
Cowboy's is open from 6 p.m. to 4 a.m., Wednesday through Saturday. Wednesdays and Fridays are ladies' night, so chicks drink free. Visit cowboysdavie.com.
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