(Oxford, MS) Fred Prewitt says an explosion of strip clubs in Memphis during the 1990s was one of the things that drove him to leave for Oxford, Miss..
"I came down here from Memphis and I know what was going on up there. I don’t agree with it."
He likes having family, like his grandson, nearby, and says Oxford is a family town and doesn’t need adult businesses.
"I teach little 4-year-olds in Sunday school and I feel like this is bad business for Oxford."
But Oxford aldermen have been laying the groundwork to control adult nightclubs, just in case.
They just passed an ordinance that would keep them from serving alcohol, as well as limit them to just two areas in town -- just west of the airport and a commercial strip along West Jackson Avenue.
Oxford leaders say they have no adult entertainment requests before them, nor are they inviting such applications. They say they just want to keep strip clubs from opening just anywhere in town.
In fact, Oxford’s ordinance states: "It is not the intent of the planning office and Planning Commission, and the Mayor and the Board of Aldermen of Oxford, Mississippi, to condone or legitimize the distribution of obscene materials..."
Sources at City Hall wouldn’t go on camera, but say the city is using the only two tools it has to control adult nightclubs.
But not everybody here is against them.
”I kinda find it OK, but then, you’re in a town full of college students, so it’d probably make a whole lot more money than people probably think,” said Oxford resident Farren McCullough.
But without alcohol, that’s a tough sell, as club owners in the Memphis area learned.
Fred Prewett says he doesn’t want Oxford to become like Memphis.
"Maybe the way it’s worded, we won’t have that."