Troubled Dolphin nightclub reopening as Rio Chicago in Bucktown

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The Bucktown nightclub formerly known as the Dolphin has reopened its doors as Rio Chicago, more than two months after a double fatal shooting closed its doors.

The club at 2200 N. Ashland is now known as Rio Chicago and bills itself as an “entertainment complex” which provides “the perfect venue for any event including casual dining, weddings, concerts, fashion shows and more,” according to the club’s Facebook page.

The club is advertising a grand opening party for Saturday, which will last until 5 a.m.

TROUBLED PAST 4 shot, 2 killed in March outside club

The shooting happened outside the club about 3:10 a.m. on March 15. Two men got into a fight inside the Dolphin and were escorted outside by security guards, according to police. They were standing in a crowd on the sidewalk when shots rang out.

Deonta Jackson, 35; and Elijah Moore, 41, both of Chicago, were pronounced dead at the scene, authorities said at the time. Two other men, ages 26 and 44, were wounded in the shooting.

A lawsuit filed by Jackson’s family a month after the fatal shooting alleged the nightclub owner’s negligence led to his death.

Ald. Scott Waguespack (32nd) wrote on his Facebook page after the shooting that the nightclub should have been closed long ago because it has been the target of chronic neighborhood complaints.

On Tuesday, Ald. Brendan Reilly (42nd) remained skeptical.

“Only time will tell,” Reilly said. “Changing a name is one thing, running the business responsibly is another. For the neighbors’ sake, I hope the new concept is safe and successful. But history shows that simply rebranding a club usually isn’t enough.

In early May, partially as a response to the fatal shooting, the City Council approved an ordinance introduced by Mayor Rahm Emanuel that empowers Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy to shut down bars with a history of police incidents and keep them closed for up to six months.

No one answered calls to the club early Tuesday afternoon.


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