The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

February 1, 2012

Madison Country Club in foreclosure

Uncertainty hangs over the member-owned Madison Country Club, which is being foreclosed upon by First Merit Bank, Harry L. Allen Jr. and Andrea L. Morris.

The foreclosure was filed Dec. 9, 2011, following the award of two judgment liens by First Merit totaling more than $1.9 million, plus interest.

An oral hearing on a motion for receiver was to be held late Monday afternoon before Lake County Common Pleas Court Judge Joseph Gibson. John Wiles, attorney for the club, did not return a call after the oral hearing.

The club is closed, but Harry L. Allen, who is also a member, said that in itself is not unusual for January and February “because of the winter schedule.” Allen refused to comment further because of his situation as both club member and creditor in the case.

The club was established in 1923 and offers both owner and social memberships. Although the golf course is for members, the banquet facilities were open to the public, making the club a popular venue for weddings.

The status of reservations for 2012 is unknown. Jeannette Petrolia, general manager of the Lodge and Conference Center at Geneva-on-the-Lake, said the lodge and country club had an informal arrangement of referring business when a venue date was unavailable. But she could not say if the lodge has picked up any cancellations for 2012 from the country club.

A woman who answered the phone at the club on Monday had no comment about the future of the club and reservations for 2012. She said the club does not have a manager and is being run by a committee, which will make a decision about opening. The club manager’s phone mailbox is full.

The Madison Country Club owns 63 acres on Green, North Ridge and Chapel roads and the Madison Golf and Country Club owns 157 acres of land on Chapel Road, according to the Lake County auditor’s website.

Other defendants listed in the foreclosure action are the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, Lake County treasurer, Deere Credit Services, Textron Financial Corporation, National City Commercial Capital Corporation and VGM Financial Services/TCE Equipment Finance, Inc.

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