A Night Out w/ Dugaldo Estrada

​"Dugs," "Duggie," or simply Dugaldo Estrada is a creative thinker, art enthusiast, blogger, boyfriend, bartender, fiction writer, college student, and avid doodler. Let us catch our breath while we take it all in, too ... 

It's safe to say that this 29-year-old has a few nicknames and more than a few things keeping him busy.

While finishing up his Creative Writing degree at ASU, Dugs has still found time to bartend at the gay cowboy bar, Charlie's Phoenix and steal our hearts with his blog,

Originally from Southern California, Estrada spent most of his adult life in San Fransisco and three months studying abroad in Madrid. He moved to downtown Phoenix in 2007 and has been spreading his worldly presence and dynamic creativity ever since.
Estrada taught us how to Duggie in Downtown Phoenix for our latest wingman venture. Read about it after the jump.

The Meet Up: Without knowing anything or anyone in the plan, I meet Dugaldo at he and his boyfriend's Orpheum Loft apartment in Downtown Phoenix.

Arriving at roughly 11 p.m., I was greeted by a party full of Estrada's closest friends, dressed in wigs and funky clothing and a corner of the room occupied by professional photography

equipment. Duggie tells me he's having what he calls an "art party," a gathering of close friends invited to drink, play dress up and have their photo taken. 

Let's just say, the plan was a pleasant surprise. Especially when realizing that two of Estrada's wig-wearing friends were close friends of my own.

The Company: Aside from Candice Binde and Chavellie Rodriguez, I was introduced to a handful of new faces (ahhh, new faces), including Dugaldo's amazing other half of 7 years, Robert Salcido, Indie Arthouse member Michelle Ponce and local blogger, Seth Anderson.

After enough drinks, dress up and flashing lights, our collective buzz decides a dance party is the next necessity in our evening and only a short walk away to Bar Smith for The Scenario.

Spotted on the rooftop between flailing limbs were a few local faves and Scenario regulars, including Ariel Perez and girlfriend Alexandra Campbell of new after-hours organization, The Official, and local DJ/nightlifer, Julio Foolio.
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Nicole Smith
Duggie, Chavellie and a flailing limb at The Scenario.

Favorite Spots: Bar Smith and Charlie's gets the Duggie seal of approval as well as his Wednesday night favorite, Gallo Blanco to watch Flamenco dancing.

After Bar Smith, Estrada, Salcido and I are the only three left standing. As we walk back to their apartment, they tell me stories of their past about growing up in the same town and their plans for the future. 

Though they plan to eventually make a move to New York, their optimism about Phoenix is nothing short of refreshing and contagious. Estrada says he's inspired daily by Phoenix, often going for walks just to take it all in.

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Nicole Smith
Contact: Nicole Smith

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