As far as going, we've had a lot of famous sims shut down. Everything in Dusan Writer's estate was shut down, for instance, including Mad Pea and Immersiva, two incredible art sims. Several well-known romantic sims and other art sims have gone their way into memories as well; AM Radio's installation comes to mind.
Tonight Willy and I wanted to spend some time, so we took a look in the SL Events to see what was going on. What I found was very disappointing; it looks like a lot of clubs are either gone or just not putting up event notices, anymore. There used to be a great variety of things to do on a Saturday night, but for the time being, that doesn't seem to be the case.
In fact, the most I see are things where people want you to spend money, or "hunt". Hunting is still quite popular; the reason Hunts got started was to "introduce" you to several new stores and businesses. Now, I know of stores and businesses who spend practically all their time making things for Hunts. At that point, what IS the point? People come to your store to find the free stuff, and hardly ever go back to buy anything.
Second Life - everywhere you go, it's all about buy, buy, buy...and since the world economy is still very repressed, people aren't as willing to cash in their real dollars for Linden dollars. And, why should they, when there's so much being given away and all it takes is a little effort to find it? I never liked Hunts, I've never participated in Hunts, either as a customer or as a merchant. I think they're pointless.
It's getting all the harder to create content that others can enjoy, especially if they're unwilling to part with a few Lindens to support it. At this point, especially, you'd best be ready to pay out of pocket for the most part, and not expect others to help foot the bill. A lot of places have found that out the hard way and have come to an end as a result.
Yes, we run a club. No, we don't expect to make a profit, and we don't. One thing you learn quickly in running a club is it isn't the club that will make you money - it's other surrounding attractions that will, such as shops. If you intend to run a stand-alone club, you will pay every month, so you'd best do it because you enjoy it and the music, rather than expecting it to turn a profit. Many clubs have come to an end because the owners expected to make money and found out the hard way they were paying out way more than they were making.
It takes a lot of know-how to run a club successfully, as well as the willingness to stick with it through the first months-to-year it'll take to truly establish it on the map. We've had ours since May 2011 and we still have a long way to go to truly call it "established".
Don't ask others to help you set up, unless you know them very well. Most club operators don't feel the urgency to share what they've learned, since new clubs always end up being competition. Your best bet is to hang out at successful clubs, see what they've done in terms of building, in how their employees act, in what they do that makes a visit special. There is a lot you can learn on your own simply by observing and asking specific questions. Whatever you do, don't ask for help from scratch. You will be turned down. Others expect you to make the effort of learning. Now, if you want to PAY them to get you started, that's a different story...