THE KANDYS LEGACY
Kandys Adult Playground is located on Route 19 (Peach Street), just outside Waterford, PA. Our new location opened on Tuesday, March 15th, 2011, and is the number 1 spot to party in the tri-state area! Before we get too far into what our new club will be like, let’s take a brief step back in time… over 20 years back.
The original ‘Kandyland’ (part of the PAP’s A.M. corporation) was opened in 1991 on the corner of 14th and State Streets, in downtown Erie, PA. It was on the second floor of a warehouse, which had previously been home to PAP’s A.M. Night Club. Being the biggest club in the area, with the capacity to hold approximately 400 – 500 people, there were 3 satellite stages, and a main stage which was bigger than all of the satellite stages combined.
Kandyland became famous for having the best dancers in the area, many of which traveled from Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Cleveland and farther, as well as for bringing in numerous Feature Entertainers. Kandyland showcased the highest number of first-class entertainers around, making it ‘the place to be’, if you were looking for the biggest party in the area.
In 1994, the City of Erie enacted an ‘anti-nudity’ ordinance; and the battle to retain our right to Freedom of Expression had begun. There is an abounding amount information about the City of Erie vs PAP’s A.M. case available online, so we won’t go into too much legal detail. If you would like more information about the numerous court cases
Kandyland changed its name to ‘Kandy’s Dinner Theater’, shortly after the battle with the city began. This was done to find the best way possible to work within the guidelines of the ‘anti-nudity’ ordinance, and still retain our right to Freedom of Expression. Kandy’s Dinner Theater featured a nightly performance of a ‘History of Music’ show, as well as a complimentary dinner.
In 1997, Kandy’s Dinner Theater changed ownership. It was purchased by Joe Cunningham. The theater continued to operate within the guidelines of the ever-changing anti-nudity ordinance. The guidelines changed with each and every court battle that was either won or lost.
In 1998, Kandy’s Dinner Theater moved from its original location, to a new location of the corner of 18th and Sassafras Streets. Due to legalities, the name was temporarily changed to ‘Krazzyland’. We operated at that location until late fall of 1998, when a new building was leased on the corner of 42nd and Peach Streets. This location had originally been a restaurant, so there was a lot of building to be done on the inside to turn it into a night club.
The new Kandy’s Dinner Theater (which had resumed its former name) opened for business in December of 1998. It was welcomed by nightly protestors on the sidewalk, and the City of Erie fighting harder than ever to take away our right to Freedom of Expression.
In mid December, Kandy’s was shut down for 15 days, due to violation of an ordinance which was not written for night clubs, but for adult book stores. Needless to say, someone dug up the ordinance, blew the dust off of it, and used it to force a temporary shut down of Kandy’s. This proved to be only a minor inconvenience though.
On January 1st, 1999, directly following our staff members watching the ball drop, Kandy’s rung in the New Year by reopening for business. The City of Erie, however continued to dig up and enforce many ordinances to try to shut the club down. Some of which included the performers having to wear full pasties and g-stings, forcing the club to only be topless.
Kandy’s also filed an application to put our escrowed liquor license to use during this time. The application was met with opposition, and the license was not permitted to be used. Meanwhile, we were still engaged in what was now a five year battle with the City of Erie regarding its anti-nudity ordinance. The case was well on its way to the United States Supreme Court.
The next two years were the hardest ones ever in the history of Kandy’s. Eventually, the constant efforts of the City of Erie, to restrict our right to Freedom of Expression, took its toll on the business in a way that was financially impossible to recover from.
In October of 2000, with a lease renewal due which included a substantial increase in payments, the owner of Kandy’s, Joe Cunningham, made a very difficult decision. He opted to extend the club’s lease at an outrageous cost, until the end of January 2001, at which point Kandy’s Dinner Theater would close its doors. This was done out of his own pocket, and the kindness of his heart, to carry all of his staff members through the Holiday Season. He couldn’t bear to see the people who had worked so hard for him for many years, and had been by his side through all the hardships be unemployed right before Christmas. The staff members were beyond grateful.
On Saturday January 27th, 2001; Goodnight Sweetheart (our closing song for the end of each night) played for the last time. Kandy’s Dinner Theater closed its doors to the public and saw the end of its era… or so we thought.
Although, the City of Erie had gotten its wish, and Kandy’s Dinner Theater had closed; we still continued to fight for our right to Freedom of Expression, through the PAP’s A.M. Corporation, as it is something we all strongly believe in.
On December 19th, 2002, the battle finally reached its end, and PAP’s A.M. emerged victorious. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld its former decision, stating that nude dancing is a protected form of expression, under the First Amendment, and reversed the decision of the United States Supreme Court, which stated it was not a protected form of expression. The decision came too late for Kandy’s Dinner Theater, but it did set precedence for the entire State of Pennsylvania. In the end, all of us, who had fought for over 8 years to have our right to Freedom of Expression realized and protected, received the greatest Christmas gift possible that year, when the final decision was announced.
Twenty years after the opening of the original ‘Kandyland’, and ten years after ‘Kandy’s Dinner Theater’ had to close its doors… ‘Kandys Adult Playgr’ is now open. In keeping with our tradition, we will once again have the privilege of operating the area’s largest premier adult entertainment hot spot. While we will, of course, bring back some of the things you loved about our club in the past; we also have an extensive amount of new and fresh ideas which are sure to take everyone by surprise.
Kandys Adult Playground is owned by Joe Cunningham. Joe is backed by a Management Team dedicate to bring in new ideas and experiences for everyone. Our mission is to provide the area with a beautiful, clean and fun establishment. Featuring top notch entertainment; our adult patrons can feel comfortable and enjoy themselves whether they are visiting for a party, a night out, or just to relax from the stresses of a long day.
Kandys Gentleman’s Club is built upon a long history, a strong belief in Freedom of Expression, and our knowledge that hard work, dedication and loyalty will prove anyone’s dreams can come true.
THE FIRST LADY
TUESDAY: 8:00 PM - 2:00 AM
WEDNESDAY: 8:00 PM - 2:00 AM
THURSDAY: 8:00 PM - 2:00 AM
FRIDAY: 12:00PM - 3:00 PM (Lunch)
& 8:00 PM - 2:00 AM
SATURDAY: 8:00 PM - 2:00 AM
VISIT US AT
Waterford, PA 16441