The gift of garb

Lingerie brings out 'Passion' in Soldotna business

Posted: Thursday, February 17, 2005


  Nuson Smith owns Passions in Soldotna. "Everyday is Valentine's Day here," he said. Photo by M. Scott Moon

Nuson Smith owns Passions in Soldotna. "Everyday is Valentine's Day here," he said.

Photo by M. Scott Moon

Nuson Smith says all of the pretty people go to the Riverside — especially when there is a runway lingerie show.

"As far as entertainment nightlife (goes), this is it," said Smith, the owner of Passions Too.

Smith and his fiance, Megan Stacey, held the second annual Valentine's Lingerie Show on Saturday at the Riverside House in an effort to boost Passions Too's visibility and client base, as well as to give the community something different to do, Smith said.

"If this were Miami Beach, it would be no big deal," he said.

However, in Soldotna, he said a lingerie show is an unusual event. The purpose he said is to market his business.

With a section of the store dedicated to lingerie and the rest for adult novelty products, Smith said his store has a good clean atmosphere that targets women and couples.

He said the trend in the adult novelties business has been to move away from the "hidden back alley" to more of a classy establishment, a trend that his store mimics.

His customers come from all parts of the community — young and old and as far away as Homer, he said.

"We try to kind of focus on the practical stuff," he said.

Smith bought the business from his father two years ago and has tried to develop an establishment that fits the community it serves, he said.

Passions Too, in the Peninsula Center Mall, has built a base of loyal customers looking for products to spice up their love life, among other things, he said. Much of his marketing is from word of mouth, he said.

He said he is always careful not to push his products on people.

"We don't like to make people feel like they have to purchase a certain product," Stacey said.

However, on Saturday, Smith and Stacey threw practicality out the window for a no-holds-barred lingerie show appealing to the audiences visual appetite, both the men and women — over the age of 21.

The show featured four women walking down a red runway in an assortment of intimate clothing from skimpy thong underwear to see-through nighties.

An announcer with a microphone riled up a crowd of cheering men and women while cautioning them to behave and not take pictures.

In between sets, patrons flooded the dance floor to bump and grind with the nearest body they could find.

"The bar is a totally different atmosphere," Stacey said. "We kind of like to spice things up when we're outside the store."

Smith sat behind a counter selling products from the store and an assortment of lingerie.

To work with the models on presenting the products, Stacey enlisted "Lindsey of Las Vegas" a professional model who is originally from Las Vegas.

But Lindsey, who declined to provide her real name, also was a participant in the show.

"It's a small town thing and I wanted to bring a little bit of flair to it," she said after walking down the runway wearing a three piece "peek-a-boo" outfit pulling another girl on a leash who was wearing a corset and boy shorts.

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