An American Indian casino in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho had its liquor license temporarily suspended on Monday after the state’s regulators determined that the all-male revue the casino hosted was too hot to handle. The Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel will be prohibited from serving alcohol for 10 days beginning on November 1, and the tribe will be forced to pay a $25,000 fine. The controversy stemmed from a recent performance of ‘HUNKS The Show’, which is a traveling show that includes no shortage of stripping and erotic dancing.
The decision has casino experts around the country questioning the authority of the Idaho State Police Alcohol Beverage Control Division. According to a spokesman, the problem with the ‘Hunks’ show wasn’t a result of nudity (although one Idaho State Police spokesperson did say the show had too much ‘buttocks’), but an excessive amount of suggestive dance moves. The Idaho law strictly bans performers from simulating sex acts.
Although the tribe has agreed to observe the suspension and pay the fine, the controversy surrounding the decision remains. Officially, the violated laws would be attributed to the dance group, which violated its contract by shaking it a bit too much, but Idaho law states that the seller is still the party that should be penalized.
Carl Disonell, a booking agent and owner of the eight-man revue, expressed his surprise regarding the trouble. According to Disonell, the group does 250 performance each year in venues around the country, but the northern Idaho case was the only one to result in legal ramifications.
“It’s a normal show,” Disonell told Komo News. “What people don’t understand is it’s really up for interpretation. If a guy pops his hips one time – ‘Oh, that’s a sex act.’”
In the two decades since originally receiving its liquor license, the Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel has never had a problem regarding the sale of alcohol. The casino’s management highlighted its policies to ensure guests are of legal age and monitor consumption. During the suspension, visitors will need to keep any alcoholic beverages in their hotel rooms, which could have a serious impact on the casino’s competitiveness throughout the 10-day period.
While it may sound a bit old fashioned, this isn’t the first time this year that Idaho authorities have made use of the simulated sex act regulation. In June, state officials penalized three bars with $10,000 fines and 15-day liquor license suspensions following an event advertised as the ‘Ultimate Males Las Vegas Style Strip Show’. In that case, two undercover officers acted as patrons during the show, which they reported having activities that are prohibited at establishments licensed to sell beer, wine or alcohol.
If you’re thinking that identifying simulated sex acts is a bit subjective, you’re in the same boat with many of those affected by the Idaho crackdown. However, the written law holds precedent in these cases, and that means no liquor at the Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel for the first 10 days of November. Thanks a lot, ‘HUNKS The Show’!