NC country club sued over proposed ‘men’s only’ dining space

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – From the clubhouse to the courtroom. One of Charlotte’s most prestigious country clubs is facing legal trouble from one of its very own members.

It has to do with a $27 million renovation to the exclusive Myers Park Country Club.

Mark Erwin is the plaintiff in a lawsuit that represents approximately 200 shareholders and members, that’s how massive this lawsuit really is. At this time, they are not suing for discrimination, just the production of records.

The club is looking to turn one of their co-ed dining rooms into a larger ‘men’s only’ gentleman’s lounge in the club’s prime location.

“The Board has indicated that it intends to fund the Project through a combination of large assessments, increased monthly fees, capital dues and increased new member fees,” the lawsuit states.

In terms of member fees, the club would be adding an extra $9,500 per member.

Erwin, who has his own investment firm, is seeking financial information, member lists, minutes of shareholder meetings and various other types of documents.

He also served as Ambassador to the Board of Directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation under President Bill Clinton.

It’s important to note that Myers Park already has a “men’s only” restaurant aptly called The Men’s Grill.

Both men and women also have their own locker rooms–and that is all the women have.

It’s not likely that the suit will turn into a discrimination case, according to FOX 46 Chief Legal Correspondent Seema Iyer.

“Private clubs have an exemption under 1964 Civil Rights Act. The First Amendment protects them and the Supreme Court has repeatedly upheld private associations’ right to what’s called expressive association,” Iyer said.

FOX 46 will continue to follow this case. Check back for updates.

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