Freeport, Illinois — July 14, 2017 — So what the #@&$%#!@ happened at Logan’s to get a ten day slap on the liquor wrist from the city of Freeport.
That seems to be the question on some people’s minds and as many know, rumor among various circles in the city can often run pretty deep.
It appears that on June 23, 2017 Logan’s held “Gentleman’s Night”, which was to be a night of female dancers that started around 9:30 p.m., and last roughly two and a half hours.
Logan’s has had a number of similar events in the past with male dancers without incident so, they rounded up some females this time and gave “Gentleman’s Night” a shot.
When it comes to events Logan’s has put on duck races, line dancing, karaoke, they hold numerous fundraisers, golf outings, team trivia nights, lots and lots of music and this year they even helped out considerably with the 2017 Freeport Fireworks, (Sky Concert).
When you’re in business, especially in the entertainment business which most bars are, you throw a lot of stuff at the wall. Sometimes things stick, sometimes they don’t and unfortunately, other times they can even bite you in the $%#, (insert place you don’t want to get bitten here).
The Wagner House in downtown Freeport has a Prohibition event where they dress up in 20’s attire and make puns about sneaking alcohol from the eye of the police.
It’s not strippers but part of the premise of the event is prohibition, drinking without getting busted. Beating the law.
It comes with the territory.
Just look what happened at Rt. 20 recently. The owner of that establishment was said to have completely snapped in front of his customers, berating one of his employees. The way the incident was described and what was said to have happened, was insane. There was such an outrage against the owner, we thought town hangings were going to come back. We thought the guy was going to get strung up downtown at high noon.
Logan’s is a female owned business.
While there is a co-owner, Blake King, he is said to not be a part of the day to day operations. He is also the ex husband of owner Michelle Magee.
While we hope that situation is going well, there’s a chance it isn’t. Most of us have heard stories or even have personal experience of the kind of damage an ex can inflict on their former spouses, and even children. To complete the Logan’s family unit, for those who don’t know ‘Logan’ is also the name of current Benchwamers owner, Eric White’s son. Altogether, a strange dynamic especially when you add in that Eric is often seen bashing Logan’s and vice versa.
Point is, nothing is perfect in this world.
According to Michelle though, someone around 7:00 p.m. on the evening of June 23rd called the police and said Logan’s were having strippers.
She says a police officer showed up around 7:30 p.m. that evening and asked about the event.
She said she told the officers about the event, explained that the girls dance, that they are not nude but that they do wear skimpy clothing. She said the officer said OK and that there were no violations. The show went on.
From Michelle’s perspective, that’s all she knew she says until Monday June 26th rolled around and the police showed back up at her establishment. Michelle says two police officers came in to Logan’s and they questioned her about the night of June 23rd.
Michelle said the officers proceeded to tell her they had an undercover officer come into the Logan’s establishment that evening around 12:07 a.m.. She said the officer told her that the undercover officer had seen naked girls in a side room.
On Wednesday June 28th the police questioned a Logan’s bartender who, according to Michelle, also told them that she didn’t see nudity. Only women in skimpy clothing and that nothing illegal went on.
Michelle said she didn’t think anything of it because she had never seen an actual police report, so she assumed nothing was “official”. Michelle says she didn’t hear anymore about it.
On June 30th however, Michelle says she got a call from the Mayor’s secretary wanting to know if Michelle had time Monday, July 3rd to meet with the Mayor. Michelle says she setup the appointment and that on Monday when she got to the meeting, the city attorney Steve Cox was there.
According to Michelle, the Mayor said that she wanted to meet in regards to the police report and alleged strippers at Logan’s on June 23rd. Michelle said she told the Mayor the same thing she had told the police officers, that the girls were never nude.
According to Michelle that’s when Mayor Miller said that the police have an undercover officer who says otherwise. However, then proceeds to tell Michelle that the police have no pictures and no video of the alleged incident. That they have no actual proof of nudity, according to Michelle.
She says the Mayor said she had two choices;
(1) Take a 10 day liquor license suspension that must run consecutively from a Friday 7:00 am until the following Sunday at midnight and pay a $5,000 fine, or
(2) take the case to trial.
Option two (2) would mean Michelle would be responsible for court costs, lawyer fees and that Logan’s liquor license would be suspended for the entire duration of the trial.
After the advice of her attorney, Michelle says she really had no choice but to admit to the charges and take the 10-day liquor license suspension.
So Thursday, July 13th, 2017 Logan’s conceded to a violation.
The bar’s liquor license will be suspended from July 28 through August 6. Logan’s will have until September 1st, 2017 to pay the $5,000 to the city.
If you take a step back and just soak the whole thing in, there sure are a lot of odd scenarios at play here.
On one end you have a bar (like every other bar), serving alcohol to the public that the police, are trying to catch people who do too much of.
On the other end of the story you have a police officer in a bar, yet no one is cited for drinking. The news of the day instead, nudity.
Rules are rules though and yes, we have to follow them. Certainly Logan’s didn’t go out of their way to intentionally bring in strippers or defy any city ordinance or law.
This is the first time that we’re aware of that any female dancers of the kind had ever been at Logan’s. Either that, or there were never any police at the ‘male dancer’ nights.
Either way, we don’t hold anything against Logan’s for pushing Freeport’s entertainment edge. This wasn’t some undercover covert op where our city caught some crazy nudity ring in the port.
It was a night of dancing (this time with females) that either did get carried away, (at the dancers doing anyway) or it just simply isn’t an event that the leaders of our community are quite ready to approve of.
While we have no idea what going ten days without serving alcohol can do to a bar business, it can’t be good. When you add $5,000 to the tab, that’s tough.
Good news is, not everyone drinks. Bad news, everyone is naked. Thank God we’re all hungry at least.
Keep it local everyone.
Logan’s is a great place. Don’t let this change that.