I’ve never been so happy to see sawdust on a dancefloor. Stoney’s Rockin’ Country reopened at Town Square October 16, and this iteration of the beloved dancehall just feels right.
“We definitely countried it up a little bit,” Stoney’s co-founder Chris Lowden says. “It feels more comfortable.”
After moving from its original spot on Las Vegas Boulevard south of Town Square in October 2012, the venue did away with some of its signature, country-western charm. Skee-ball and other arcade games got the boot, and the once-dusty floor seemed perpetually squeaky-clean. The tunes started to change, too, as hip-hop and Top 40 tracks were added to the once country-dominated soundtrack. Lowden, who says he wasn’t happy with the direction, parted ways with the venue’s management early in 2014, taking the Stoney’s brand with him. “I wanted a country place.”
After a temporary closure, the space reemerged as the Las Vegas Bull, sticking with the eclectic music format and a more mainstream nightclub focus—though that operation was short-lived, closing in June.
Lowden wanted to bring the boot-scootin’ back, and not only because his name’s on the lease. “We believe there is good value in Stoney’s Rockin’ Country,” he says, adding that he and operators Porchlight Hospitality have created a “true country-western dancehall” for Stoney’s third life—including an exclusively country playlist, more beer-pong tables, an American flag sculpture made of beer cans and barbecue through a partnership with Pot Liquor Contemporary American Smokehouse.
Lowden says they’ll emphasize live entertainment, booking touring acts like The Voice’s Cassadee Pope, who rechristened its stage on opening night. “Our focus here is to be the country-western destination in Las Vegas, to be that place where everybody can come and just dance and have a great time.”