EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


September 22, 2009

Georgetown Club cancels weddings, fires staff

Bankruptcy filing says creditors owed $10M

GEORGETOWN — The president of the Georgetown Club has filed bankruptcy, leaving scores of employees without work, creditors on the hook for about $10 million, and perhaps two dozen brides without a place to host their receptions.

According to court documents filed by club owner Dr. Peter Wojtkun on Sept. 11, the filing for protection under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code included three legal entities listed as debtors: The Georgetown Golf Club Inc., New England Golf Partners Inc. and Georgetown Links LLC, all of which Wojtkun runs. The holdings concern the 18-hole golf club, its clubhouse and function facility at 258 Andover St. in Georgetown.

Yesterday, a phone call to Wojtkun, a dentist, at his practice in Andover was not returned.

The documents advise the court that the three debtor organizations started running into problems in early spring, when they experienced cash-flow problems due to things "beyond their control, including, among other things, the weather and the economy."

At the club yesterday, no one was answering phones in the function office or restaurant, or returning messages, and the voice mail at the golf professional's extension had a message it was "no longer in service."

Along with the 15 salaried and more than 100 hourly employees who are left unemployed, concern has been expressed all over town for the brides who booked the banquet halls at the clubhouse for their upcoming receptions.

The mother of one of those brides, Margaret Leavitt of Bradford, said they had already paid at least $5,000 to reserve the club for this Saturday.

Leavitt said she does not think they'll get that money back, but that on the bright side her daughter was able to find someplace else for the reception on such short notice.

Georgetown police Chief James Mulligan said he got a call yesterday morning from the mother of a bride who was supposed to have her wedding reception there on Oct. 4. "Unfortunately, we can't do anything to help people get their deposits back. It's a civil and not a criminal issue, so it's out of our jurisdiction. But it's just awful. She was understandably very upset."

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