Squeezing into a club booth with strangers. Pogoing in the front row of a raucous concert. Doing an off-key karaoke rendition of “Girls Just Want to Have Fun.”
COVID-19 reduced or even completely eliminated these and other Cincinnati nightlife traditions in 2020 and even now in 2021.
Nevertheless, we persisted. Despite hardships from the coronavirus pandemic, bar owners, musicians and promoters still found ingenious ways to safely entertain us and provide ample opportunities for schmooze or make-out sessions. And we're crossing our fingers that there will be even more this year.
Below, check out a few of CityBeat’s reader and staff picks in music and nightlife from our “Best Of Cincinnati 2021” issue. Read about even more nightlife winners here, and see our entire Best of Cincinnati list here.
- Best Boozy Hand Sanitizer (staff pick)
- Best Club/Party DJ (reader pick)
- Best Drag Queen (reader pick)
- Best Jazzy Wine Bar with a Focus on Female and BIPOC Winemakers (staff pick)
- Best Li’l Sebastian That Isn’t a Mini Horse (staff pick)
- Best Local Band (reader pick)
- Best New Bar (reader pick)
- Best Place for a Casual Gathering If You Don’t Have a Backyard (staff pick)
- Best Place to Shoot Pool (reader pick)
- Best Socially Distant Concert on Wheels (staff pick)