Long-closed Dayton club re-emerging for one bumping night

“It is kind of like ‘Hot Tub Time Machine.’ You feel like you are back in ‘98. There are not a lot of cell phones out. People are talking (to each other),” organizer says.

A long-closed Dayton night club will bounce back to life for one night — and there will likely be jumping around, bumping and grinding.

The spirit of Asylum Nightclub is rising again.

Credit: Matt Freeman

Credit: Matt Freeman

Matt Freeman, a longtime DJ at the alternative music dance club, will host the 2019 installment of the annual  Asylum Reunion from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. Friday, Nov. 29, at Therapy Cafe, 452 E. Third St. in downtown Dayton.

>> Photos: Do you remember Asylum Nightclub?

“You have the same music, the same DJ and the same atmosphere for the night,” Freeman said. “It is kind of like ‘Hot Tub Time Machine.”


There will be a $5 cover.

“The Asylum Reunion grows in numbers every single year, with last year’s reunion being the biggest thus far with over 300 people in attendance,” Freeman said in a statement. “I can’t begin to tell you how fortunate myself and Eric Heilman are to have been a part of such an incredible club, and then 20 years later we still have the opportunity to gather.”

The bash’s official pre-party will be held 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at

The Barrel House, 417 E 3rd St., Dayton.

The party at Barrel House is for those 21 years and older.

The Therapy Cafe is 18 and up.

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Dayton property owner Scott Edsall opened the Asylum, which morphed into Club Fusion and Parallax, in 1993 and closed in 2005. Freeman said it was inspired by a popular New York dance club.

Credit: Matt Freeman

Credit: Matt Freeman

Its former building, 605 S. Patterson Blvd., now houses Daybreak, an emergency shelter for runaway and homeless youth.

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Freeman started as a DJ at the Asylum in 1994. He has hosted about eight reunions for the dance club since 2014. In the early years, two reunions were held a year. Now just one is held a year.

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Asylum drew as many as 1,500 people on a typical Friday or Saturday night, many willing to wait in long lines to get in.

“Back then, you had to go because everyone was talking about it,” said Freeman, a graphic artist.


What: Asylum Reunion 2019

When: 9 p.m. to 3 a.m., Friday, Nov. 29

Where: Therapy Cafe, 452 E. Third St., in downtown Dayton.

Cost: $5 at the door

Online: Facebook event page link

Credit: Matt Freeman

Credit: Matt Freeman

Credit: Matt Freeman

Credit: Matt Freeman

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