SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

September 20, 2013

Cabaret put up for sale

By Alan Burke
Staff writer

---- — PEABODY — The Cabaret strip club on Route 1 is being sold, according to lawyer Jack Keilty, who represents the buyers.

Owner Francis X. Green hopes to sell the club once the transfer of the liquor license is approved by the city’s Licensing Board. Keilty won’t reveal the names of the would-be buyers except to say they are from the Haverhill area, previously operated a Chinese restaurant and have never owned a strip club before.

Keilty does not believe they intend to make substantial changes in “the nature of the business,” but he added, given the location on busy Route 1, “The value of the real estate far exceeds the value of the business.” The buyers would be purchasing both the business and the property.

In recent years, given the easy availability of pornography on the Internet, the strip club business has been said to suffer.

Green, a Newbury resident, has been an owner of the Cabaret since the 1990s, eventually buying out a partner, Keilty said. The strip club operates in an adult entertainment zone, and despite the unpopularity of the club with city officials, Keilty sees no obstacles to the sale, noting that the current owner has avoided any serious trouble.

“I think Frank has done a good job out there,” he said.

Licensing Board Chairman Minas Dakos agreed, recalling only a single violation over the years, one in which the Cabaret was caught selling alcohol to a minor during a police sting.

Green “was a gentleman about it. He accepted the penalty” and promised to take steps to ensure it wouldn’t happen again, Dakos said. “I was impressed.”

Keilty hopes to complete the license transfer by late October.

Staff writer Alan Burke can be reached at aburke@salemnews.com.