Strip club in old school irks neighbors

May 20, 2010 at 4:06 PM
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NEOGA, Ill., May 20 (UPI) -- A 6-month-old Illinois strip club, which took up residence in a vacant elementary school building, is still drawing nightly protesters.

The Pioneer School in Neoga, Ill., which was sold by the district for $36,800 in 2002, opened its doors as The School House strip club six months ago, with the former cafeteria hosting topless dancers and the former teacher's lounge serving as the VIP room for lap dances, the Chicago Tribune reported Thursday.

A dwindling number of protesters still gather nightly outside of the establishment with a bonfire and a sign reading, "Does your family know where you are? Jesus does."

Nadine Kastl, 81, who used to drive a school bus for Pioneer School, said a recent basketball game featuring a Neoga team saw the opposing fans waving dollar bills at Neoga cheerleaders in an apparent reference to The School House.

"I can't believe that happened to our kids," she said.

Bob Kearney, co-owner of the club with business partner Travis Funneman, said the club went through all the proper channels before opening and adheres strictly to local regulations.

"It's no longer an argument of legality; now it's an argument of morality," he said as a stripper crawled across the stage. "Is this Nazi Germany? Are they the Taliban? It's OK to break the laws as long as it's in the views of my religion?"

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