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PTA opposes planned bookstore

An adult video and bookstore planned in north Fargo is facing opposition led by the head of the Madison Elementary School Parent Teacher Association.

An adult video and bookstore planned in north Fargo is facing opposition led by the head of the Madison Elementary School Parent Teacher Association.

Cheryl Palya-Wetch has started a petition drive and contacted the Fargo Catholic Diocese and members of the Fargo School Board and City Commission to try and halt plans for the shop at 1015 38th St. N.W.

"I'm angry. You don't mess with a mama and her kids," Palya-Wetch said. "It's too close to where my kids go to school."

In addition, a partner in the store, Willie Wilson, plays a part in operating a Minot, N.D., adult bookstore called the Pleasure Palace.

Wilson said Wednesday he had no previous ties to the adult entertainment industry.


The second partner in the Fargo store, Bill Shillingstad of Las Vegas, and his wife Linda, are identified by the North Dakota secretary of state's office as the managing partners of Pleasure Palace LLP.

The Shillingstads used a Coleharbor, N.D., address in their filing, but there are no directory listings for Bill or Linda Schillingstad in the state.

Reached at their Las Vegas residence Thursday afternoon, Linda Shillingstad said Bill was visiting with his sister, but he would call back. He did not return that call or a later one.

In a later conversation, she said she no longer had anything to do with Pleasure Palace, then hung up.

Palya-Wetch wants to get religious services started in the Microtel Inn and Suites hotel next to the proposed bookstore site before the city approves the building plans.

City officials say the adult bookstore would meet zoning regulations and city adult entertainment laws. Chief among those requirements is that the business be 1,250 feet away from any religious institution, school, park or public recreation facility, residential district, businesses that sell alcohol or another adult entertainment establishment.

Palya-Wetch hopes getting services started quickly would provide a legal loophole to block the adult bookstore.

"We don't need another bookstore. They have one downtown. That's enough," she said.


That adult bookstore is the ABC Adult Book Center at 417 NP Ave.

Wilson's ties to the Pleasure Palace were confirmed Thursday. An employee at the Pleasure Palace said Wilson was "the boss." The employee said the shop sold lingerie.

However, a call to the Minot Police Department confirmed that the Pleasure Palace was primarily an adult bookstore.

Madison Elementary is about three-quarters of a mile east of the proposed bookstore site. That puts it about a half mile outside the exclusion zone. There is also Interstate 29 as a buffer.

But Palya-Wetch said that's not enough for Madison Elementary, which serves a large percentage of students from low-income families.

Pornography and related ills "don't need to be anywhere near us. We have enough problems in this neighborhood," she said.

"Come hell or high water, we'll make sure this won't go through," Palya-Wetch said.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Helmut Schmidt at (701) 241-5583

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