POSTED ON JUNE 2, 2010:
Nacho Libre Luchadors
Eloté's new bar sheds new light on "fight night"
Slammed Down. La Corredora and Margarita the Meter Maid battle it out every other Thursday at the Luchador Bar at Eloté Café, 514 S. Boston. Olé!
KENNETH M. RUGGIANO
With apologies to legendary arena announcer Michael Buffer, it's time to rumble in downtown Tulsa.
No, there isn't a championship heavyweight boxing bout coming to the BOK Center.
Nor is ONEOK Field hosting an outdoor edition of Wrestlemania. Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Ultimate Warrior won't be making special appearances at Cain's Ballroom, either.
Nevertheless, wrestling is making its mark downtown. It's not your average, run-of-the-mill, as-seen-on-TV wrestling event -- in fact, you'll be hard-pressed to find this type of wrestling on any sort of TV north of the border.
This is lucha libre, and the luchadores have found a home in the Luchador Bar at Eloté Café, 514 S. Boston Ave.
The phrase "lucha libre" is Spanish for "free fighting," and the fighters at Elote put on quite a show.
Before the Luchador Bar opened, Eloté owner Libby Auld said she was looking for a way to keep the restaurant busy into the late hours of the evening.
"We were sick of hearing people ordering one drink and then going to another bar," Auld said.
Once Auld decided to open a bar, the search for a theme began. Auld wanted to do something different and thought a luchador-themed bar would be funny, she said. A 10-foot ring was built, and the Luchador Bar came to life.
"We thought we needed to do something different downtown in order to be successful," Auld said.
And successful it has been. Auld said the house is always packed to watch the técnicos battle the rudos -- heroes versus villains -- in the luchador fights, which take place on the first and third Thursdays of each month.
In keeping with the tradition of lucha libre, the luchadores all wear masks to shield their true identity from the public eye, along with costumes to help define the fighters' personas.
Auld said the luchadores have been embracing their roles and accepting the bumps and bruises that come with battling it out in the ring.
La Corredora Luchadora, a técnico, and Margarita the Meter Maid, a rudo, are two of several fighters who duke it out every other Thursday.
La Corredora, who enters to the song "She's Going the Distance" by Cake, said it's fun to get out, have some fun and elbow drop opponents.
"The scene isn't very large, especially for women, but it's just fun," she said. "It's a great environment. The owners had a great idea in bringing us in. And what else do you want to do twice a month than come out and wrestle, have a good time and have a couple of beers after you wrestle?"
Every luchador has a nemesis, and for La Corredora, that enemy is Margarita the Meter Maid, who takes her name from the Beatles song "Lovely Rita."
Margarita, who issues citations and throws coins to the customers -- "People need to keep their change so they have coins to feed the meter," she said -- said the fans love to hate her.
"It feels really good, because as the Meter Maid, people don't like you," she said. "So anytime you get a chance to bring somebody down off the turnbuckles, it feels really good."
As the luchador fights draw bigger and bigger crowds each week, Auld said the new bar is helping to accomplish a goal she shares with other downtown restaurateurs -- bringing new life to downtown.
"We all have the same mission," she said, "and that's to get customers downtown."
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