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Debt-holder bids on Churchill Valley Country Club's assets

| Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

In addition to owning the Churchill Valley Country Club's debt, a Wexford development company now owns the shuttered club's assets, including furniture, fixtures, kitchen equipment, its liquor license, its name and more.

Zokaites Properties made a credit bid on the assets at a Sept. 28 judicial sale, the details of which were laid out in a Sept. 4 court order by Judge Christine Ward.

A credit bid allows a lender — or in this case, the current owner of the debt — to make a bid based on the outstanding debt.

Ward ruled that Churchill Valley Country Club officials and principals in the Beulah Road Land Company, which owns the property, owe Zokaites about $2.13 million.

Zokaites originally purchased the club's debt from PNC Bank, and was embroiled in a dispute over the summer with unsecured creditors Duquesne Light Co., Sysco Foods and Harrell's, who are owed more than $77,000 and petitioned the court on July 25 to place the club into Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection. Those same three creditors then requested that their petition be dropped shortly afterward.

The club's assets include leased equipment. Zokaites had until Sept. 30 (after the deadline for this issue) to accept or reject the leases, in which case leased equipment would be returned to the owner(s).

Zokaites has purchased among the assets: the name “Churchill Valley Country Club,” the club's telephone number and website, records, permits, maps, plans and other items classified by the courts as “intangible property.”

The club, founded in 1931, once was considered among Western Pennsylvania's finest golf courses, and straddles the boundaries of Penn Hills and Churchill off Beulah Road.

When reached regarding plans for the club or its assets, Zokaites Properties owner Frank Zokaites directed media to the official court documents.

His attorney, Jeffrey Hulton, did not respond to calls for comment. Officials for the Beulah Road Land Company also did not answer requests for comment.

Patrick Varine is an editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7845 or pvarine@tribweb.com.

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