County OKs transfer of liquor license to new owner of old nightclub

The parade of nightclubs that has marched in and out of a Fruitvale building over the years continued Monday when the Mesa County Commission approved the transfer of a liquor license from the owner of the old club to the man who will soon open the new one.

Commissioners unanimously agreed to transfer the license from Axis Nightclub and former owner Neal DeHaven to what will be known as Decades and owner Ron Nunnery, who also owns the building at 2993 North Ave.

County Liquor License Clerk Kathy Crane told commissioners that DeHaven, who purchased the club from Nunnery last year, defaulted on the loan. A judge appointed receivership to Nunnery last month.

Michael Grattan, a Grand Junction attorney representing Nunnery, said Decades will play 1960s-1990s music, feature pool tables and serve pizza and sandwiches. He said the club will cater to a crowd that’s older than previous clubs have drawn.

Neither Grattan nor Nunnery indicated when Decades will open.

Whatever business has occupied the building in the past several years has had legal and financial trouble.

A former occupant, Rum Bay, was scrutinized by the state and county because of numerous law-enforcement calls to the establishment. Its liquor license was suspended for 30 days in 2006 because an employee served a visibly intoxicated person.

New owners in 2007 vowed to rebuild its image, but the business closed again in 2008 when several people were caught on video performing simulated sexual acts with members of a female strip and oil wrestling troupe.

When DeHaven purchased the club, he had to agree to several conditions requiring security, working video surveillance cameras, properly trained bar staff and assurances that minors will not be sold alcohol. Those same conditions transferred with the liquor license and will apply to Decades.

The state of Colorado temporarily seized and shut down Axis in February for nonpayment of $11,782 in taxes. The club reopened after DeHaven paid the taxes but then permanently closed this spring or summer.


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