Bradley’s on 7th (1510 E. 7th Ave., Tampa) is celebrating its third anniversary. To celebrate, the staff will be organizing a special party for all of the loyal customers who have kept the bar successful for the past few years. The anniversary party will start at 9 p.m. on Saturday, March 8, and will host two diva revues hosted by Joey Brooks, The First Lady of Ybor. Joey Brooks will be joined by Esme Russell, Robyn Demornay and Special Guests: Susan Whitney & Natasha Richards at 11:30 p.m. and 1:15 a.m. Music will be provided this evening by DJ Don Lamb.
I got to speak with owner Bradley Nelson in an exclusive Hotspots interview.
How does it feel to reach the three-year mark in business?
Almost like a dream! One, because it is hard to believe it has been three years already. Two, because Bradley’s has far exceeded any dreams I did have on what business would be like. In the anniversary ad, it says “Three Years and Going Strong.” And there is no statement that could be closer to the truth.
Since Bradley’s has been open, what has been your proudest moment?
I would have to say opening night. Getting the doors open was not a easy process. From the day I signed my lease, it was 13 long months before the opening. Construction was completed in three months and everything was set to open. Then the City of Tampa stated that a new water vault had to be installed by the landlord to supply enough water pressure for the fire sprinklers. The landlord had just filed for reorganizational bankruptcy and didn’t have the money. So I had a completely remodeled bar ready to open, and had to sit and wait 10 additional months. Someone with a weak heart probably wouldn’t have been able to handle the stress. Opening night was amazing, especially seeing my name on the newly-hung sign.
For people who haven’t visited Bradley’s before, what would you tell them? What’s special about Bradley’s that you’d want them to know about?
Bradley’s on 7th is the “Cheers” of gay bars. You can come in not knowing anyone, and leave having made new friends, or at the least, having found a new favorite bartender. Bradley’s is a very laid back and comfortable place. Even on weekends when the place is packed. There is something about the atmosphere at Bradley’s that puts everyone in a good mood, letting them have a great time. The entire staff is super friendly and outgoing. The majority of the staff has been there since our opening.
What’s your favorite aspect of Bradley’s on 7th? The drinks? The bartenders? The divas? The river that runs through the main bar? The ‘blue tile selfies’? The dance room? Let Bradley’s know what you like most as they celebrate their anniversary. Friend them on facebook at facebook.com/bradleys.onseventh.