Home Christian News Christian Nightclub That Bans Twerking Encourages Gen Z To ‘Ditch the Isolation’...

Christian Nightclub That Bans Twerking Encourages Gen Z To ‘Ditch the Isolation’ and ‘Build Some Real Connections’

The Cove Christian nightclub in Nashville
Attendees at The Cove, an 18-and-up, pop-up Christian nightclub, dance in unison on Saturday, Feb. 17, 2024, in Nashville, Tenn. More than 200 racially and ethnically diverse young clubbers attended The Cove's fourth event. (AP Photo/Jessie Wardarski)

Gen Zers are flocking to worship Christ and dance alongside like-minded people at an unlikely place: a pop-up Christian nightclub called The Cove in Nashville, Tennessee. The goal of the club’s monthly events is to help young adults experience Christian community outside the church walls.

There are three simple rules at The Cove: “No twerking. No drinking. No smoking.” These three rules were announced from the front stage, but the Associated Press (AP) reported that another, unwritten rule is that the club exclusively features Christian music.

‘No Twerking. No Drinking. No Smoking.’—Hard and Fast Rules at Christian Nightclub, The Cove

Seven young Black men devised an idea to help combat the post-pandemic decline in church attendance—especially among Black Protestant congregations. Among the creators are musicians, a social media guru, and others who wanted to bring a safe, authentic, and engaging experience to their generation.

“We ourselves experienced a pain point of not being able to find community outside of our church, not knowing what to do to have fun without feeling bad for doing stuff that’s conflicting to our values,” Eric Diggs, The Cove’s 24-year-old CEO, told AP. “There wasn’t a space to cultivate that. So, we created it ourselves out of that pain point—the loneliness, the anxiety, depression, COVID, and the long quarantine.”

Since its first pop-up event in November 2023, The Cove has held monthly events, reaching a wide variety of young adults. They come from different backgrounds. They’re ethnically diverse. They wear a wide variety of brands and styles. But they come for a common purpose—to “come to the faith and have fun,” shared attendee Garrett Bland.

Each event gets bigger, with more attendees and more offerings. Food trucks park outside, and clothing vendors set up booths inside.

“What surprised me the most is the diversity, honestly,” mentioned Aaron Dews, a founder of The Cove. “With us being seven Black guys, just seeing the expansion of the type of people that we can bring in, and the unification around one idea has been incredibly encouraging.”

Each evening, participants are guided through the evening of engagement and connection—with God and with each other. Carlton Batts Jr., one of the founders and often the emcee, asks the entire group questions that divide attendees into groups and reveal the diversity represented.

“In church, people can be really cliquey,” said Batts. “So here, we give them prompts, so when we start the DJ set, people are really comfortable dancing.”

@thecovenash The Cove is a Christian Nightclub in Nashville for young adults! We throw epic parties every month Our next event is March 16th! Make sure to save the date #christiannightclub #party #partyculture #nashville #nashvilletn ♬ original sound – salem

Jordon Diggs heads up the group’s social media focus and presence. They wanted to see if they could obtain 1,000 followers before their first monthly event. Instead, more than 10,000 young adults followed The Cove—sharing the same deep desire for authenticity in a Christian setting.

“Christians get a rep for being corny. And we want to show that Christians can be normal, can be cool,” Jordan said. “And they can have fun.”