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Priape Closes Its Doors


Priape Closing Window Display in VancouverPriape, a gay sex shop with locations nationwide (including in the Davie Village), has closed its doors as of October 21st, shortly after it filed for bankruptcy. The chain blamed government restrictions on "popper" sales, a muscle relaxant marketed as leather cleaner that users inhale to get high, though their financial situation is said to be more complicated.

A fixture in gay villages across Canada, Priape has been struggling to keep afloat after Health Canada demanded poppers be taken off shelves with the threat of a 3-year jail sentence and $5000 fine. Although poppers are not illegal in Canada, they are considered a drug, and their sale is regulated by the Food and Drug Act.

Priape was located at 1148 Davie Street and helped provide for the leather and fetish scenes in the Village. It was founded in 1974 by Robert Duchaine and Claude Leblanc. The company employed about sixty people. For now, its online store, which has two employees, remains open.

Update: Priape saved from extinction by new owners in Montreal via Xtra News.