Friday Night in the Bakken Oilfield
"We get drunk and think about how Williston used to be, then go home and dream about how it could be."
Rose Darrell, a roustabout in the Bakken Oilfield, enjoys her Friday night in Williston, ND
On Friday nights, people around the world leave their offices to fill their innards with cheese fries and booze to put the pain of the working week behind them. This makes for plenty of photo-worthy moments, so we've decided to send photographers to the planet's finest cities and towns to capture Friday night as it unfolds.
For this week's installment, our photo editor Matthew Leifheit went to Williston, North Dakota, to see how workers in its booming local oil industry blow off steam.
"At sunset the town seemed bleak and creepy. But I was told by a local there were only a few places left to hang out in Williston, since both of the town's strip clubs were recently closed. One of those places is Walmart. Another is a family friendly bar called J Dubs, where a Johnny Cash cover sometimes plays. Then there's DK's Lounge, where cameras are not allowed after some recent bad press from local media outlets concerning a rise in prostitution in the area. Finally, there are some bars on Main Street, like Bob's Back 40, that stay open later. In all of these places, you'll find very few women. 'We get drunk and think about how Williston used to be, then go home and dream about how it could be,' some guy in a bar told me after last call."
Aerial view of the landscape surrounding Williston, ND
Johnny Cash of the Dakotas: Merle Travis Peterson, frontman of The Cold Hard Cash Show