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Scores Opening at Lake Geneva

LAKE GENEVA-Scores, the high-end strip club made famous by satellite radio shock jock Howard Stern, is opening a club near Lake Geneva.

Scores Lake Geneva will open on the first floor of the Sugar Shack Club on County H, four miles north of Lake Geneva. The club will feature female dancers and strippers. The original Sugar Shack and its male dancers still will occupy the second floor, said owner Dana Montana.

Originally a New York club, the publicly traded company now owns two clubs in New York City and licenses clubs in Chicago, Las Vegas, Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Baltimore.

The trademark name is owned by Scores Holding Company.

Scores’ grand opening to the public will feature Ronnie the Limo Driver from the Howard Stern Show on June 9. Gary Dell’Abate, popular Stern sidekick and producer, will host the evening June 10.

Scores Lake Geneva also will offer two private preview parties before the grand opening: a private VIP party June 7 and an invitation-only media party June 8.

Scores Lake Geneva bars will be open from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily. Guests can sample a wide selection of vintage and nonvintage champagnes, fine wines, cocktails and imported, domestic and micro-brewed beer.

The club holds 250 guests, has two private presidential rooms, a champagne area with lounge seating and two large-screen televisions. The club caters to private parties of all sizes.

During the 1960s, Montana worked as a Bunny at the Chicago Playboy Club. Montana said she was fired at 23 for being too old.

Montana bought a decrepit building four miles north of Lake Geneva on County H that once housed The Club J-MAR. She renovated the building and opened the Sugar Shack as a dance and music club about 37 years ago. The club is named after a song by Jimmy Gilmore and the Fireballs.

In the early 1970s, Montana came up with the idea of male strippers to attract women customers. Her idea landed her on talk television shows, and the men-stripping-for-women idea caught fire.

A few years later, she added female strippers and opened the Sugar Shack Gentlemen’s Club on the premises.

Montana said she and a partner now co-own the Scores in Chicago, which once was the Sugar Shack 2. She said the Sugar Shack still is known for male strippers, and she wants to draw more male customers with the notoriety of the Scores name.

Montana believes the image of strip clubs is changing. Now, the Sugar Shack receives busloads of couples, the groups separating for the female strippers downstairs and male strippers upstairs. Future brides and grooms have held their bachelor and bachelorette parties at the Sugar Shack, Montana said.

Michael Cotter, Walworth County assistant corporation counsel, said the Sugar Shack and two other adult entertainment clubs in Lake Geneva are grandfathered into the county’s zoning codes as “legal, nonconforming uses.”

Opening a Scores on the premises is legal because it doesn’t change the property’s basic use, Cotter said.

However, the Sugar Shack-and the two other clubs-can’t expand their buildings and can’t be rebuilt if they burn down.

In 2000, the county adopted a zoning ordinance that permits adult entertainment establishments but limits where they can locate.

In general, new strip clubs can locate in areas zoned B-2 general business, B-3 waterfront business or B-4 highway business, Cotter said. However, the establishments must sit 750 feet from certain other uses, such as residential areas, churches, schools, parks and day-care centers. Such clubs also must be in enclosed buildings.

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