Believe it or not, one of Chicago's most popular gay late-night nightclubs began as a small café in Boystown on Halsted Street. Years later, owners of Circuit wanted to spice things up a bit so they moved north, away from the cluster of other Boystown gay bars and clubs and made their home further north at 3641 N. Halsted.
Before I get to the good stuff, let me start with a small list of complaints I have about Circuit. Pricey drinks and a pricey cover charge make the club a little unappealing unless it's late at night and other bars are closing and you are left with few options. Drinks can be expensive, some up to $8 and it's usually the same price to get in the door. And like many Boystown bars, bartenders seem to have a stick up their butts when it comes to customer service. Pretty gay boys get the best treatment and service with a smile while they give a lot of attitude to everyone else. I'm not looking to make friends or exchange numbers with them but do you want a good tip? I've heard friends complain about crappy music, though I guess I've never paid attention that much as my trips to Circuit have been well into the early hours of the morning and music is not the first thing on my mind. The music I have heard is typical club music and suits me just fine when I feel like getting out on the dance floor. The drag shows are a bit disappointing too; they aren't as good as some of the ones at other Boystown bars but they are entertaining nonetheless.
A definite plus is that Circuit is geared more towards lesbians especially on Circuit Girl nights. Gay men do frequent the bar too but if you are looking to hook up with a woman in Boystown I would definitely stop at Circuit first. It is straight-friendly but don't be surprised on certain nights if you find yourself the only one playing for that team. Back to the ladies of Circuit, Circuit Girl nights feature a different theme every Friday. Go-go girls and really anything to attract lesbians like speed dating and drag king shows are popular themes. Every Saturday night from 8-11pm Miss Foozie hosts Wiggin' Out when men are invited to come in their best drag and perform songs for cash prizes. After prizes are awarded the DJ turns Circuit into hip hop central playing only that genre of music. Thursdays and Sundays are Latin music nights when hispanic cowboys are often found gracing the stage. Cover charge varies each night depending on the event and usually isn't charged until later in the evening, sometimes even after midnight. The club also plans specials and parties throughout the month.
"We feel that the real reason people go out is to make a positive connection. Possibly a connection with a group who share in the same interest, a connection with another person, with themselves or even with a higher power. A positive connection may also be a learning experience or inspiration. We aspire to help people make their connections... thus the name 'Circuit.'"
– excerpt from Circuit Night Club website
Overall, Circuit is a great space. There is tons of room for dancing, which is a plus in Boystown since most of the clubs have small dance floors. It can get crowded but that is expected on weekends. My experiences at Circuit have been pretty uneventful but enjoyable because I was with good company and the specials were pretty decent too (see above). If you like Circuit, you might also want to grind it at Spin, Berlin or Hydrate. For more information and a calendar of events, check out the Circuit website.
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