This is a tale of two nightclubs.
RedZone, 4814 Sheridan Road, and MVP Sports Bar, 3214 60th St., have both found themselves facing criticism and punishment from Kenosha police and city officials over unruly crowds, noise and other complaints.
The difference is the owners of RedZone decided to buckle down and work with officials in order to keep their cabaret license, which allows them to present live entertainment — including popular DJs that bring big crowds.
Meanwhile, MVP’s owners did not, and the result was the loss of their cabaret license.
RedZone is very close to having its cabaret license extended after instituting a number of measures to address neighbors’ complaints.
“We’ve reached out to (residential neighbors),” owner Duvall Coates told the city’s Licenses and Permits Committee last week. “We’d like to be proactive. There’s not a group of neighbors in here right now complaining about us.”
The license renewal is still not guaranteed. Police say they still devote a lot of resources to RedZone and have requested another meeting with Coates before recommending approval.
Meanwhile, the owners of MVP Sports Bar saw their cabaret license revoked after police said they failed to work with officials to address concerns there.
Police Chief Daniel Miskinis informed the committee that police had been called to the bar 45 times between Nov. 9 and July 1, with police seeing “a pattern of disorderly behavior at the bar and in adjacent streets, sidewalks and the parking lot.”
In the latest incident on June 30, a man was shot and critically injured in the bar. The shooting led to a stampede out of the club, and brawls broke out. Kenosha called in help from neighboring municipalities to handle the situation, with 36 officers trying to quell the commotion.
“Patrons of the tavern were defiant and nonresponsive to the commands of law enforcement on the scene,” Miskinis wrote.
DJ nights at these bars draw lots of people, which is what the bar owners want. But that does not relieve them of their responsibility to provide a safe venue for all involved.
Though RedZone came close to losing its license, the city and the club worked together for the benefit of both.
MVP failed to do that, and the city was right to pull the license. Considering what happened on June 30, and all the trouble leading up to that date, it was the only move left to send a message to the owners.
“I did not hear a way we could avoid this in the future,” Ald Anthony Kennedy said.
After the license was revoked, MVP owners Darnell and Trice Rand — who admitted to their inexperience in running a nightclub — said the license revocation was a wake-up call.
“I felt that we didn’t quite understand the severity of this,” Darnell Rand said. “This is a learning experience for us. We’re going to work on that.”
Let’s hope they do, so they can have a successful — and safe — business.