Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

BREAKING - Lake Lawn purchase on horizon?
Locals want to buy, reopen, possibly create charitable trust

by Lisa Seiser

March 17, 2011

Delavan - It appears a deal may be close between local investors and Anchor Bank on the sale of Lake Lawn Resort.

Investors were scheduled to meet with bank leaders Friday, March 18, to discuss details of a purchase.

During the past two weeks, Jim Drescher, leader of the investment group, which apparently also includes Lake Geneva's Sal Dimiceli, has made offers to Anchor Bank for about $8.5 million. However, those offers were not accepted.

Drescher, who runs the WC Food Pantry in Geneva Township, told a packed room full of Delavan area leaders and interested residents at City Hall Thursday night, that he has been working on this effort since January and believes he has been "chosen" to reopen Lake Lawn Resort.

City officials agreed Thursday night and also have been helping guide the process forward through talks with the bank leaders and other political leaders. According to city officials, Anchor Bank sold part of the interest to other banks, which are the ones not interested in the deal.

Delavan Mayor Mel Nieuwenhuis told the crowd that Anchor Bank is "not the enemy in this" and he hopes this purchase will work out. He said he has been talking with bank officials and they have agreed to discuss the issue further with Drescher. The City Council also approved creating a resolution that will be presented to the banks involved stating the city's support of Drescher and his investment group and the desire to reopen Lake Lawn.

Drescher said this is "not about the money, it's about the people." He said he wanted to bring back the 300 jobs to Delavan and has future hopes for Lake Lawn to become a charitable trust that will give back to the area. Dimiceli, who was not in attendance at the meeting in Delavan, heads the Time is Now To Help.

Lake Lawn has been closed since the end of last year.

See the Lake Geneva Regional News and stay with as this story continues to develop.