Local

Crystal Lake Park District to sell banquet hall to owner of The Cottage

The Crystal Lake Park District is in the process of selling the Park Place banquet hall, 406 W. Woodstock St.
The Crystal Lake Park District is in the process of selling the Park Place banquet hall, 406 W. Woodstock St.

The Crystal Lake Park District is in the process of selling the Park Place banquet hall, 406 W. Woodstock St.

Paul Leech, owner of The Cottage restaurant, 6 E. Crystal Lake Ave., plans to purchase the site and turn it into his own banquet hall.

Last week, the City Council voted to provide Leech with a Class 12 liquor license to allow alcohol to be served on the premises.

The Park District currently holds a Class 12 license at Park Place for banquets and events. However, because licenses are nontransferable, the Crystal Lake Event Center requested that the City Council approve an increase in the number of Class 12 licenses to allow for the continuous operation of the site.

Once the sale of the property is complete, the Park District’s Class 12 license will be automatically revoked, according to city documents.

Jason Herbster, executive director of the district, said the sale will be completed next month. He said the building will sell for about $420,000.

“The park board made a decision about a year ago to go ahead a sell it,” he said. “It was not making money, and the district was subsidizing a facility we shouldn’t really be subsidizing.”

He said the building will have “nothing to do with the Park District once it’s sold,” he said. “The Park District’s done a good job of maintaining it over the years.”

According to the Park District website, the facility has a hardwood dance floor, a chandelier room, an elevated stage and is handicap accessible.

Leech said he plans to continue running the place as a banquet hall that will be rented out for weddings, reunions and parties.

He said he plans to restore the facility and rename it Hickory Hall.

“I’m very excited to open,” he said, adding that The Cottage’s banquet manager will offer high-end catering services.

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