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Adult-Themed Store Shut Down In East Grand Forks

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GRAND FORKS, N.D. (AP) — An adult-themed store that was blocked from opening at a Grand Forks location was shut down a day after setting up shop in neighboring East Grand Forks, Minn.

Fargo-based Fantasy’s sells lingerie, costumes and adult toys. Owners Jim and Kim Patterson wanted to open in Grand Forks in a building a block away from an elementary school, but city leaders in response restricted where sexually-oriented businesses could operate. The move came after neighbors of the store complained, and a Facebook site surfaced opposing the location.

The Pattersons on Monday quietly opened their East Grand Forks location, which is within a few blocks of a school and a church. City officials shut down the store a day later, and after an inspection Wednesday told the Pattersons they would need to move from their commercial district site to an industrial district.

“On our observation, there were various devices and aides, if you will, that can only be used in our interpretation for one purpose and that was a sexually oriented manner,” East Grand Forks City Administrator Scott Huizenga told WDAZ-TV. Sexually-oriented businesses can operate only in industrial zones in East Grand Forks.

Jim Patterson told the Grand Forks Herald that city officials did not take issue with the clothing or costumes in Fantasy’s but with the other products, which Kim Patterson has said are sold by other retailers.

“That’s one of the biggest products we sell,” Jim Patterson said. “It’s necklaces, hairpieces, plates, silverware, stuff you see in the bars that the girls use for the bachelorette parties.”

The Pattersons are waiting for legal advice from their lawyers.

“We’re leaving all of our options open,” Jim Patterson said.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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