OGDEN -- A team of pole performers was prevented from entertaining at the Scrapyard Arena in downtown Ogden during a Dew Tour after-party Friday night because of a business decision, says the event's organizer.
Lynda Huddleston, who helped coordinate entertainment at the Scrapyard, 159 23rd St., said performers from Studio 4-A in Salt Lake City weren't allowed to go on stage because there were minors in the audience and it was unknown if the group's routine might be risque.
Huddleston said she apologetically explained to Chastitie Lujan, a Studio 4-A instructor, that the Scrapyard had been under scrutiny from Ogden police because the after-party was the venue's first event.
"I mentioned there were a lot of eyes on us," Huddleston said, recalling what she told Lujan.
Five performers from Studio 4-A were invited by individuals associated with the Scrapyard to put on a free demonstration at the Dew Tour after-party, Lujan said Wednesday.
The group was informed by Huddleston only a few minutes before they were to take the stage at 9 p.m. that they couldn't perform because the Scrapyard had received pressure from police, Lujan said.
However, Lt. Scott Conley, who is in charge of vice enforcement for the Ogden Police Department, said he was unaware that the pole performers were going to be appearing at the Scrapyard until he was contacted by the media following the after-party.
Tentative entertainment booked for the party kept changing in the days leading up to the event, Conley said, adding that police probably wouldn't have objected to the pole performance.
"If it's totally artistic and falls under a cabaret definition and is not a sexually oriented performance, there wouldn't be a problem," he said.
"If we had known about the performance in advance, we would have investigated it further to see what criteria it fell under."
Lujan said it's unfortunate that the pole performers were not allowed to show off their athleticism at the Scrapyard, adding the group's routine is not risque.
"Current pole sports have changed the stigmas of the past in every corner of the globe," she said in an e-mail to the Standard-Examiner.
"Today's pole is associated with extreme strength, artistic beauty and fearless execution.
"Pole performers are true professionals and experts at what they do."