Live Blog: 24 Consecutive Hours at Pop's Nightclub

Categories: Fiesta!

Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 8:51am
DJ Big J really is the best. He took a full break so he could karaoke Toto's "Africa."

Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 8:06am
There are still a crapload of people here. I just caught myself rubbing my eyes like a sleepy toddler.

Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 7:45am
Much clown love in the powder room. Family!

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Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 7:21am
Good morning from the Pop's parking lot.

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Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 7:02am
People are waking up for church right about now, so let's pretend to be civilized for a minute and drop some actual results of the research that I've been doing while I'm here.

There is a local urban legend that Pop's has actually been open 24 hours a day since 1981. The first location of the club was just across the parking lot from here on the same plot of land that now holds the Sauget Diner, but it burned down as a result of an electrical fire in the 1990s. So, the story goes like this: When Pop's No. 1 burned down, the club still sold beer in the parking lot to maintain its 24/7 reputation. Management at Pop's says that story isn't true, but they do say that employees and patrons certainly did drink beer in the parking lot as they watched the building burn. Some brought flowers, too. Their grieving was short lived, however, when the current Pop's location opened just a couple of days later.

For the record, Pop's is closed exactly one day a year: on Christmas. They joke that they have a hard time on every December 25th with finding the keys to lock the front door since the front door is never locked otherwise. And because the place is so enthusiastic about its 24-hour-a-day reputation, we locals know that winter weather is actually really, really bad when Pop's makes an announcement that it is closed because of ice or snow. Personally, I know that the few times that has happened that I have been terrified for my life. In my mind, if Pop's is closed, that must mean that we're all going to die.

Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 6:42am
"Cupid Shuffle" is on again, and friend Shaun is dancing the Curly Shuffle. #blessed

Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 6:30am
So, here's the deal: I had planned on staying here from noon on Saturday until noon on Sunday, but since tonight marked the "spring forward" bit of daylight saving time, my plans got all weird. This means that if I stay until noon on Sunday, technically, I've only stayed for 23 hours instead of 24. That would ruin my bragging rights. So I think I'm going to try to stay until 1 p.m. today. Also, I haven't mentioned this yet: I am at Pop's and I've been way sober the entire time. I repeat: it is 6:30 in the morning and I've been at Pop's for about eighteeb hours and "Rack City" is playing and I'm sober. Fact: I am more punk than you.

Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 6:00am
Six more hours. I amaze me, but I have friends here to keep me company. They're eating cheese fries.

Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 5:55am
The crowd has thinned just a bit, but the place still feels full. Some are leaving while others are just arriving. In the super-amazing film Tapeheads, they would call this photo "production value."

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Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 5:32am
The Philly cheesesteak outside in the parking lot is bumpin'.

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Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 4:21am
This crappy picture is a view from the balcony. It's WAY more crowded than it appears in this photo. This place is packed. The DJ just played Pharrell William's "Happy" followed by "Great Balls of Fire" then "Footloose" and "Jailhouse Rock." It's a party on the dance floor.

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Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 3:53am
My friend Ryan doesn't know how to do the "Cupid Shuffle" dance, but he's trying. Dude, you need to spend some more time at Time Out on Gravois.

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Sunday, March 9, 2014 - 3:05am
So "spring forward" just happened, and this place just got balls insane. People are coming through the door at the rate of about one a minute, and the whole place just got instantly packed. Big J is killing with the hits and the dance floor is filling up. Here's the view from the stage.

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Continue to the next page for earlier dispatches.


Location Info

Pop's Nightclub

401 Monsanto Ave., East St. Louis, IL

Category: Restaurant


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