First Avenue Partners Battle For Control

MINNEAPOLIS (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — According to the Star Tribune, former managers for First Avenue Steve McClellan and Jack Meyer are attempting to take over the club from founder Allan Fingerhut. McClellan and Meyer each own 10% of the building that houses the club and were employees of Fingerhut until June of this year.

Along with Byron Frank, 60% owner of the building, McClellan and Meyer are looking to evict Fingerhut on the grounds that he is behind in his rent and owes about $160,000 in real-estate taxes. Frank and Fingerhut were friends and partners until last year when a court battle between the two resulted in an increase of Frank’s ownership to the current 60%.

According to Frank’s lawyer, the lawsuit is not an act of revenge by the two former employees and Frank. "Up until last Friday, [Frank, McClellan and Meyer] had been trying to negotiate a plan to keep Allan in there running the club, but he has not responded."

Should the eviction occur McClellan and Meyer hope to continue running the club, though under a different name. Many people in the local music community believed the two former First Street managers were the primary reason for the club’s success. The tandem was involved in the filming of Prince’s “Purple Rain” video as well as now famous bands the Replacements and Soul Asylum.

Fingerhut defended his firings by noting the three straight years First Avenue has been in the red.

“This is just more negotiating,” he said. “It has all been going on for too long." — by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers

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