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Article updated: 4/25/2011 6:20 PM

Naperville's BlackFinn reopens after fine

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Naperville Mayor George Pradel said he expects BlackFinn American Saloon's growing pains to come to an end following a city-ordered 24-hour shutdown and a $1,000 fine for recent liquor code violations.

Pradel, who also serves as the city's liquor and tobacco commissioner, said representatives of the restaurant and bar at 16 W. Jefferson Ave. avoided a costly April 21 hearing by admitting to advertising a $35 all-you-can-drink special and failing to serve food past 11 p.m.

"BlackFinn is a growing business in our downtown and they've made some mistakes but they've owned up to them. Now they know for next time," Pradel said Monday. "You can't serve an unlimited amount of alcohol for a set price and their license states they are a restaurant first and must sell food until closing time."

Rather than bear the costs associated with a hearing and risk a more sever punishment, Pradel said, BlackFinn representatives met with him and agreed to close for 24 hours and pay the $1,000 fine.

"They were very cooperative," Pradel said. "We told them they had to close for one full day and it had to be a busy weekend day. I was surprised they picked April 22 because Good Friday is typically one of the most busy nights in a bar and restaurant."

Calls and emails placed to BlackFinn management went unreturned Monday.

Naperville police Sgt. Gregg Bell also referred calls to Pradel but previously stated officers assigned to the downtown were keeping an eye on BlackFinn near closing time due to an increased percentage of alcohol related arrests of BlackFinn customers.

Most recently, a male bouncer was stabbed and seriously wounded early March 5 after catching a Lombard man and his girlfriend smoking in a restroom.

Adam B. Hearn, 31, of the 900 block of South Main Street, was indicted by a DuPage County is charged with one count each of armed violence and attempted murder, and two counts each of unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon and aggravated battery in the case.

Pradel said he thinks the restaurant has been receiving some unfair criticism.

"You can have that at any place that you go to. BlackFinn is a big place and a lot of people go to it," Pradel said. "Let's let them operate and if they do wrong again, they'll get nailed by the police and we'll sit on them like we did here and see what happens."

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