- LEARN TO SALSA: At Club 27 in the River Market district.
The Latin dance scene in Little Rock has moved around as much as the cha cha, but since December 2016 it's had a more permanent home: Club 27, in the River Market district at 614 President Clinton Ave.
Around 300 fans turned out for the ballroom's grand opening, in space previously occupied by Juanita's restaurant. On Friday nights, salsa pro and club masterminds Sarah-Catherine and Jorge Gutierrez give a little instruction starting at 9 p.m. and the dancing gets into full swing at 10 p.m. Don't have a partner? It doesn't matter, the Gutierrezes say. You'll find someone to merengue with, no problem. There's a full bar to help with shyness as well. Admission is $5 before 10 p.m. (that includes the lesson) and $8 afterward.
Here's a list of other places to dance to the music; cover charges vary depending on events and (sometimes) gender:
315 Main St.
8 p.m.-2 a.m. Fri.-Sat.
This is a two-story dance hall, 10,000 square feet with two bars with a steampunk aesthetic. Twentysomethings and thirtysomethings get into some vigorous grooves under the rainbow lights to music cranked out by the DJs in an elevated booth. Thirsty and hungry? Soak up your Wild Rabbit (cognac and coconut vodka in pineapple juice) and other specialty drinks with potato skins, burgers, wings and other bar food.
412 Louisiana St.
9 p.m.-2 a.m. Thu-Sat.
Club Sway was the Arkansas Times Readers' Choice for Best Gay Bar, but it's a night spot for everyone. Sway has a multitiered dance floor under colored strobe lights, the yearly Fresh Fish drag competition (modeled after RuPaul's Drag Race), drageoke with Queen Anthony on Thursdays and the House of Avalon's "anything goes" dance party series, Gawddaughter. The venue is also open Wednesday and Sunday for special events (in 2016 it hosted get-togethers with progressive political candidates).
307 President Clinton Ave.
8 p.m.-2 a.m. daily
Dance to dueling pianos or a DJ or dueling pianos and a DJ, and other live music at this River Market district club. The country music and rock 'n' roll is on the bottom floor; the hip-hop and rap scene is upstairs.
1021 Jessie Road
9 p.m.-5 a.m. Sat.
This venerable multiroom dance club has been hopping since 1979, bringing in the late-night dance crowd, both gay and straight. Move to whatever beat you want; Discovery has a discotheque, a theater for its drag shows, and hip-hop and Top 40 in the lobby; there's also a game room.
1021 Jessie Road
9 p.m.-4 am. Fri.
An 18-plus, Friday-night-only dance club attached to Discovery features three areas to hang out, depending on your mood: LeBistro, a chill little bar with a pool table area; 701, where the weekly drag shows start at 11 p.m.; and 501, a dance floor in case you're so inspired by the queens werkin' it that you need to werk it a little yourself. Catch the open call Drag Wars the last Friday of every month at 1 a.m.
9515 Interstate 30
8 p.m. to close Wed.-Sun.
The folks at Discovery call the Electric Cowboy "Straightland," but the Times' own reviews describe it as the most diverse club in town: It's not just longnecks and line dancing. You might even catch an Arkansas Times reporter doing the Cupid Shuffle there. Still, this is where you'll learn to scoot your boots (Thursday nights 8:30-9:30 p.m.). There's a weekly pool tournament, too ($10 buy-in; house matches pot). When you're tired of moving on your own two feet, you can mount the mechanical bull.
2400 Cantrell Road
4:30 p.m. until Mon.-Sat. (bar)
Cajun's bar has live happy hour bands and main acts Thursdays through Saturdays with a DJ in between, so the dance floor never gets cold. In good weather, there's also lots of partying on the "big swinging deck," right there on the Arkansas River. Another bonus to bebop balletics at Cajun's is the full menu from its restaurant next to the bar. There's music piped in Monday through Wednesday, but it might be seasonal, though a slow dance to "Baby It's Cold Outside" sounds good — especially to the crowd at Cajun's, which tends to be grown-ups.