Strip Club Next To Convent
February 9, 2012 by staff
Strip Club Next To Convent, When Stone Park’s village government authorized a new strip club to come to town, officials did more than enhance its reputation as a “sin city” of the western suburbs.
They upset a group of nuns. Turns out the Stone Park village board approved the project even though the club – which is still under construction and hasn’t yet opened – is adjacent to a convent that includes a complex for elderly and sick nuns, and another building for young women wishing to enter the Roman Catholic sisterhood.
“What are we trying to teach the children in the neighborhood?” said Sister Marissonia Daltoe, of the Missionary Sisters of Saint Charles Borromeo – Scalabrinians.
The religious order occupies the property next to the club, which will feature partially n*de performers and alcohol.
“Also, our novices, we’re trying to form them to live a religious life, a missionary life, and it’s so ironic that right behind them is this place,” said Daltoe, whose group is based in Rome, historically dedicated to aiding “migrants” and comprised of 800 or so members around the globe.
But beyond moral objections, the nuns are now raising questions about whether the rules were followed properly by Stone Park officials during the 2010 approval process.
Daltoe suspects the club – which is to be called “Get It” – may have been built too close to the nuns’ property line. The club, a green-walled metallic structure, is on the 3800 block of West Lake Street in Stone Park and stands less than two feet from the nuns’ fence line. (The nuns’ land, centered at 37th and Division, is partly in Stone Park, partly in Melrose Park.)
Even more, Daltoe said her group and many neighbors were not properly notified of the project, and only learned about it through the grapevine.
Stone Park officials concede that their practice is to send letters to land owners within 250 feet of projects to let them know about public hearings. But, in the case of the nuns, the village sent notifications to the wrong address because Cook County property records were apparently incorrect, said Stone Park Village Attorney Dean Krone.
“I was upset to learn this, but at that point, there was really nothing we could do,” he said.
Such letters are not required, “that’s something the village has done voluntarily as good practice, and usually it works,” Krone said, adding all other legal requirements were met by village government, including posting notice of the project in a local newspaper. And the club is within an allowable distance to the nuns’ property, the village determined.
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