while the bible bashing rulers of tolleson hate porn vendors the citizens of tolleson love the stuff and flock to the new Fascinations porn store in tolleson


Tolleson's first adult store draws crowd for opening

Marianne Refuerzo The Arizona Republic Feb. 13, 2006 12:00 AM

TOLLESON - Hundreds of customers mobbed the Fascinations Superstore in Tolleson when the city's first adult store opened for business Thursday.

"The response has been overwhelming," said Michael Ham, a company spokesman, who estimated more than 500 people poured into the store throughout the day. "We're happy to have our grand opening and to see singles and couples here to enhance their relationships."

The store, a huge emporium that specializes in racy lingerie and sexually oriented novelties, obtained the city's go-ahead last year before Tolleson regulated adult businesses.

The City Council was unaware that the "clothing store" it approved in April was Fascinations. The application said only that it was a retail business.

After Tolleson officials learned about the store's true nature, the city passed an ordinance in September to keep future adult businesses away from commercial and residential neighborhoods.

If crowds at the 11,000-square-foot store's opening were an indication, the council's gaffe was a blessing in disguise.

"It's about time," Larry Carr, 29, of Avondale, said at the Fascination's opening.

Customers browsed the rows of lingerie, lotions and videos in the store at 83rd Avenue and McDowell Road. Some were in an adult shop for the first time.

"I'm trying to break out of my conservative shell," Heidi Little, 41, of Laveen, said. "I was surprised. . . . It wasn't as raunchy as I thought it was going to be."

Gayle Slusser, 53, of Phoenix, said the store's opening means the west side of the Valley "is finally coming into the 21st century. We don't have anything like this, and I have to travel downtown if I want anything."

Special guest Sue Johanson, host of Talk Sex With Sue Johanson on the Oxygen Network, took questions from the audience.

"This is a wonderful opportunity to learn about sex," she said, "so that you're not left out of the loop."

Cities across the Valley are struggling with regulating adult businesses.

In Scottsdale, voters will be asked this summer to approve tougher restrictions on strip clubs enacted after adult-film star Jenna Jameson bought an establishment on Scottsdale Road.

Last year, Phoenix banned sexually oriented businesses from downtown after an adult bookstore was proposed near then-America West Arena.

A version of this story may have appeared in your community section or your community Republic

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