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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Farewell to Dallas' Master of Good Times

Dallas' gay community has lost one of its stars  with the sudden and untimely passing of Marty Hershner. Marty owned one of Dallas' most popular night clubs, The Tin Room, and had just recently opened a second venue on the Cedar Springs Strip, The Drama Room, a club that is fast gaining in popularity. Marty left us while in full stride. He loved what he did, and never ceased to have a good time doing it.

Dallas bar owners and their patrons can be notoriously bitchy, and as Marty's success grew, so did the gossip, back biting and rumors of the demise of his clubs. I'll even admit that when BJ's NXS opened last spring, that I predicted the end of The Tin Room. I couldn't have been more wrong. Regardless of what was said behind his back, Marty kept a genuine smile on his face and never let the bastards of the world get him down.

Since he opened The Drama Room, I was becoming one of Marty's bigger fans. He took a less than stellar venue and turned it into a great party spot by hiring a first rate, friendly and attractive staff, keeping his prices within reason and making it his personal mission to see to it that every patron that walked through the door had a good time. I even once overheard him chastise a bartender for speaking about business matters in front of a patron.

It was Marty's mission to throw a good party, and at both The Tin Room and The Drama Room, the party never stopped. He was a hands on owner. You would see him dashing in and out of both clubs at all hours making sure that everything was running to his satisfaction. And he wasn't all that easy to please!

That he has died at such a young age (he was only thirty years old) and while he was standing at the threshold of major success in the community is sad indeed. I will personally miss his laugh, his wry sense of humor and the gentlemanly way that he treated all of us who patronized his clubs.

One of his employess  told me that Marty would roll over in his grave if the clubs were closed today. And so, the party continues, even  in less than twenty-four hours of his passing. I have a feeling that Marty has found the party on the other side, and is redecorating some gay bar in heaven.

Marty, we'll miss you very much. Thank you on behalf of all the people that you've entertained over the years, for being the master of the good times, the proprietor of the party, and most importantly, the fun loving, compassionate good friend that you were to so many people.

And as tough as it is to say goodbye to someone who should still be with us, I will do so in the way he'd want me to. I'm headed to The Tin Room, right after I hit "send."

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