A swingers’ group’s plan for an event at a local gentlemen’s club has drawn the attention of municipal officials who say it may violate local regulations.
Strip Club Takeover (SCTO), a group that organizes get-togethers at such clubs for swinging couples and others, has rented Club Champagne on Crown Point Road for a Dec. 3 event. An Internet announcement of the “December 3 Takeover,” as it is dubbed, seemed to indicate what is planned may cross the line as far as local officials are concerned.
Both West Deptford Township Administrator Eric Campo and police Chief Craig Mangano said Tuesday they and others must determine whether the “Takeover” should be allowed, provided organizers don’t cancel it themselves.
“We’re in the process of reviewing that with the police department and the zoning office,” Campo said.
The announcement for the event was emailed by a source to the Times, Campo and others.
“SCTO is here to give you exactly what you want ... food, BYO, strippers and SEX all under one roof!” it said in part.
“You must be on the guest list to enter the door,” it said elsewhere, adding that “it is imperative that we all make sure to keep this hush hush!”
SCTO also told potential guests of hotel reservation discounts connected to the event.
Tickets to the Takeover, scheduled for 8 to 11 p.m., are $60 per couple and $40 per single female.
Several exotic dancers are also scheduled for the Takeover, the announcement said.
While Champagne — surrounded by the oil tanks of the shuttered Sunoco refinery — is BYOB, SCTO warned guests, “If you are bringing hard liquor, please be discreet in how you carry it to the door.”
Campo said he, Mangano and others are reviewing a January 2009 state Superior Court Law Division order regulating what is allowed inside the club.
“It governs what activities can take place within,” Campo said. “There are limitations. And we need to investigate whether there are violations. At face value, there may be.” ...
Donald MacPherson — publisher of the Soho Journal who once mulled a run for Community Board 2 chairperson — pleaded guilty last Wednesday to 45 counts of grand larceny, insurance fraud and other crimes in an elaborate $82 million Hamptons mortgage fraud scam.
Prosecutors described it as the most massive mortgage fraud case in Suffolk County’s history. Up to 60 homes were involved, mostly on Long Island’s East End.
According to the Southampton Press, MacPherson’s trial was set begin on Mon., Nov. 14, two days before he accepted his plea.
In July, former Suffolk Legislator George Guldi pleaded guilty to being part of the five-person mortgage fraud along with MacPherson. The five were charged in March 2009 with stealing millions of dollars from lenders between 2002 and 2007. ...
MacPherson’s wife, Carrie Coakley, 41, who was also implicated in the mortgage fraud ring, has not entered a plea and remains charged with first-degree grand larceny and scheme to defraud in the first degree, the spokesperson said. Her next court date is Dec. 5.
Coakley — who is a dominatrix, according to the D.A. — is accused of recruiting straw buyers for the scheme at The Dungeon, the Manhattan S&M club where she was in charge. In the end, 17 individuals total were indicted in the scheme.
Newsday reported that it took almost an hour and a half for MacPherson to answer questions last Wednesday about the various ways he swindled banks in properties in Southampton.
He reportedly said he paid the straw buyers a fee of $10,000, assuring them he would make the mortgage payments on a particular house. But he instead retained the mortgage proceeds and allowed the house to go into foreclosure.
Newsday said that MacPherson admitted that he inflated his income and that of his straw buyers, and that he falsely reported that some of the buyers were employed in high-level jobs in companies he owned. ...
A ‘Spanksgiving’ event that explores bondage and sexual masochism has been singled out for law enforcement, its organisers claim.
STL3 from St. Louis, Missouri said its event in Fairview Heights, Illinois has been unfairly targeted by the council demanding its vendors buy permits.
The council had originally said it did not have to pay, as it is a non-profit organisation.
But the group claims after the council carried out more research into its activities, they demanded vendors buy permits.
City council members have argued the requirements were announced weeks ago – long before they heard of the convention.
The group is holding ‘a three day adult educational seminar and play party’ this weekend for 250 people at the Four Points by Sheraton in Fairview Heights.
The convention, which explores bondage, discipline, sadism and masochism in sexual relationships, includes seminars entitled The Joy of Polygamy, Slutty Sex for Real Relationships, Rope 101 and Needles.
endors required to purchase permits include Ms. Martha’s Corset Shop and Bill Stevenson, Whipmaker.
Susan Wright, the spokeswoman for the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom, said organisers want to cooperate fully with the city and plan to obey all state and city laws.
But she added: ‘What is being asked of this conference that is not being asked of other conferences?
‘You can't just enforce it against one group and not another. Did other conference vendors have to pay this fee? It's because of the nature of the event.’
Council member Sandy Baldwin said the city recently decided to enforce the permits and sent letters to all hotels.
She said they are not specifically targeting ‘Spanksgiving’, but simply enforcing existing codes.
‘I would prefer to not have this kind of event in our city, there's no doubt about that,’ Baldwin said. ‘But I also understand, legally, when your hands are tied, we can only make sure the laws on our books are being followed.’
She added that one rule did not stand for all non-profit organisations.
‘I think there's a difference between a Girl Scout cookie and a sexual toy paraphernalia,’ she said. ‘When you sell Girl Scout cookies, that money is put back into the Girl Scouts. It's going back into the community.’ ...
When you find it, the desire to jump into the deep end of the BDSM pool can be irresistible. The excitement of new found friends, playmates and activities can drive a submissive off track and into dangerous situations for mind, body and soul. In this letter to my submissive friends, I offer some advice to avoid the pitfalls during your adventures.
I am so excited for you! It’s such a thrill to watch you blossom into your own sexuality and forge ahead with erotic explorations. For too many years you’ve denied your desires and then struggled to come to terms with them. Now, as you’ve discovered there are others like you; a community of people who enjoy the same things you do, you radiate with the joy of finding acceptance and common ground, a place where you could be heard and let’s not forget, get hot play.
I know you’re about to rush out the door for a play date, but would you take a moment and hear me out? I know everybody and everything you’re encountering seems exciting and wonderful, but will be potential pitfalls, heartaches and dangers along the way. I’m your friend so I’d like to do my best to help you avoid them.
Remember, whatever desires, roles or labels we take on, we’re people first. Respect yourself, respect others and choose to be with those who respect you for all that you are. Even the most gloriously degenerate and depraved play must start from a place of mutual respect and return to that afterwards.
You didn’t get this far in life by being a doormat; so don’t let people walk all over you just because they say they can. You are powerful. Choosing submission from a place of power is beautiful. Find a person who appreciates and treasures that. You’re like a hot-blooded racehorse; under sleek beauty simmers great energy. But you get to choose who will take your reigns, so don’t let just anyone take control, or you’ll get taken for a ride. Be choosy — you’re worth it....
Organizers of a sex convention this weekend say they are being unfairly targeted after aldermen said the city will check if event vendors have permits.
STL3 Inc. has organized a "Spanksgiving" conference from Friday to Sunday at the Four Points by Sheraton hotel for about 250 people who will explore bondage, discipline, sadism and masochism in sexual relationships.
Ward 1 Alderman Norm Miller informed the public at a City Council meeting on Tuesday that he received a call from a concerned citizen about the event.
Miller questioned whether event vendors would need permits and if the city would get sales tax revenue from sold merchandise.
"We have no idea what's going on in there. We have no idea what's being sold," Miller said.
National Coalition for Sexual Freedom spokeswoman Susan Wright, on behalf of a national advocacy group that partners with STL3 Inc., said the conference will have classes and social activities as well as vendors who sell sex toys and other merchandise.
Wright said organizers want to cooperate fully with the city, and plans to obey all state and city laws. But Wright also questions the timing of the enforcement.
"What is being asked of this conference that is not being asked of other conferences?" Wright said. "You can't just enforce it against one group and not another. Did other conference vendors have to pay this fee? It's because of the nature of the event."
Wright said event organizers were not notified by the city about the permits until Wednesday and the hotel was not aware of the requirements.
Ward 5 Alderwoman Sandy Baldwin said the city decided in recent weeks to enforce the merchant ordinance and sent letters to all hotels and motels in the city.
The city is not targeting "Spanksgiving" specifically, but making a push to enforce existing codes, Baldwin said. She added that though she is personally against the event, she recognizes the group's rights.
"I would prefer to not have this kind of event in our city, there's no doubt about that," Baldwin said. "But I also understand, legally, when your hands are tied, we can only make sure the laws on our books are being followed."
Baldwin also said the city will monitor the area to ensure there's no activity outside the hotel and none of the trailers on the hotel parking lot display graphic images.
According to the city's "Hawkers, Peddlers & Itinerant Merchants" ordinance passed in August 1990, merchandise vendors need to have a city-issued license to operate and applicants must have an Illinois sales tax number.
The permit fee is $50 per event and good for seven consecutive days. Those who violate the ordinance could be fined from $150 to $500 a day.
The ordinance also states that "Charitable, Service, Church Organizations, City sponsored functions and Non-Profit Hobby Clubs shall be exempt from any fees incurred as a result of this legislation upon review by the Mayor."
The city would not make nonprofit groups such as the Girl Scouts get permits, Baldwin said.
"I think there's a difference between a Girl Scout cookie and a sexual toy paraphernalia. When you sell Girl Scout cookies, that money is put back into the Girl Scouts. It's going back into the community."
STL3 Inc. is a registered nonprofit corporation with the Missouri Secretary of State and Internal Revenue Service....
As part of Lehigh’s power and privilege series the Office of Multicultural Affairs hosted a workshop on Tuesday Nov. 8 exploring the seemingly taboo sexual expression of BDSM, an acronym that refers to Bondage, Discipline, Dominance, Submission, Sadomasochism and Masochism.
BDSM involves the consensual exchange of power in erotic or sexual situations. Although BDSM has been largely viewed with disapproval in mainstream society, it has become more recognized and popularized by recent media attention, including Rihanna’s hit, “S&M.”
The concrete associations with BDSM commonly include whips, chains and handcuffs during erotic situations in order to feel pleasure out of pain.
“I didn’t know that BDSM was a real thing, or a big deal, or even considered a form of abuse,” said Roshni Desai, ’15.
BDSM is a unique way of sexual expression, that to some, might seem like sexual abuse. However, focus of the workshop was to put BDSM in a different light, differentiating it from sexual abuse. It analyzed how the tenants of BDSM go far past the chains and whips into the concepts of power, privilege, and gender equality.
One of the main topics of the workshop was exploring the guiding principles of BDSM. The main principles are safety, to hurt but not harm, to be self-affirming but not self-destructive, to be fully consensual and never under the influence of any form of substance. Along with these principles, BDSM is always negotiated and agreed upon ahead of time, and it can be stopped in any instant for any reason, giving both parties equal control.
These principles alone refute any association between BDSM and sexual abuse. Because of these principles, BDSM provides a mental escape to a place where there is equal power and privilege between both partners, regardless of their gender. So, when looking beyond the whips and chains, to the principles and morals of BDSM, it proves to be a healthy form of sexual expression that is merely just misunderstood by society.
“It is my hope that students will leave the workshop understanding BDSM as a normal and healthy form of sexual expression, that they will be able to differentiate between BDSM behaviors and sexual abuse and that they will begin to explore some of the power and privilege around gender and sexuality,” said Brooke DeSipio, assistant director of the Women’s Center and host of the event.