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Photograph by George Sakkestad

Metro's Club of the Week

The Saddle Rack
42011 Boscell Road, Fremont; 510.979.0477

By Vivian Chen

Amenities: Live country music and dance lessons Wednesdays through Fridays; two dance floors; mechanical bull ($3 a ride); game room with pool tables available for private parties

Signature Drink: In-mouth Margarita from the infamous barber chair

Recently relocated from San Jose, the Saddle Rack continues its 25-year-long legacy under the watchful eyes of managers Gary Robinson and Andy Buchanan. The club has expanded in size to 14,600 square feet and fans of the old San Jose Saddle Rack will be pleased to see the margarita chair and mechanical bull maintaining their residency. New to the club and conveniently located next to the barber chair is a Hitching Post ready to perform spontaneous weddings valid for 12 hours for any couple in lust.

Under the glow of antique chandeliers, three full bars surround two dance floors where cowboy hats bob up and down with the upbeat energy of the Saddle Rack's house band, Appaloosa. Last Saturday, the band played a variety of music, from Patsy Cline to the Commodores. Off in a corner, a beast of metal machinery continually bucked patrons onto the padded floor, turning brave riders into rodeo clowns. A diverse crowd of all ages and backgrounds partied together in this parallel universe of a Las Vegas barn raising, proving that country line dancing is not just for cowboys anymore.

Thursday nights offer amateur musicians a shot at fame in "Saddle Rack Idol," a talent contest sponsored by KRTY-FM (95.3) who will award winners with a professional recording as well as on-air radio play. Other competitions include everything from limbo to a Tim McGraw/Faith Hill look-alike contest with prizes ranging from money to concert tickets. For shy patrons determined to ride the bull, less busy Wednesdays and Thursdays provide an ideal atmosphere in which to embarrass yourself.

Ongoing Schedule:
Wednesdays-Fridays: Dance lessons at 7:30pm; live music begins at 9pm
Thursdays: Saddle Rack Idol; dance lessons at 7:30pm; live music begins at 9pm
Saturdays: Doors open at 7pm; live music begins at 9pm (no lessons)
Sundays: Dance lessons at 1pm

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From the May 15-21, 2003 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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