The mood was festive as revelers were handed their horns, hats, blinky-light glasses and rings, gathering at the booths and barstools. Well-dressed ladies in various styles of vintage frocks, men sporting retro suits with vests laughed and drank with their friends. Lurking in the background to this party atmosphere, however, was the sad knowledge that the Red Palace, established in 2006, would no longer be open after this night. Gone were the sideshow oddities, returned back to their owner. Bottles behind the bar were nearly empty, not to be restocked. The gritty Atlas District bar closed for good after a New Year’s Eve send-off.
Dec. 31, 2012 (Text by Pam Barton) Before the six-year-old Red Palace closes its doors permanently, burlesque performer Julie "Atlas" Muz emerges on stage for a New Year’s Eve show. As the Atlas District has become more welcoming to young families and yuppies alike, there is no place for the gritty, off-beat venues that once punctuated the streets. Melina Mara/The Washington Post Buy Photo