Lake in the Hills

UpRising Bakery Allowed to Resume Hosting Events After Reaching Agreement With Village Officials

A suburban bakery that has faced vandalism and harassment will be allowed to move forward with scheduled events, including a brunch show with drag performers, after reaching an agreement with officials on Thursday.

According to a statement released by the American Civil Liberties Union, UpRising Bakery and Café in suburban Lake in the Hills will be allowed to hold events after questions arose surrounding zoning restrictions on the property.

“We are elated to have come to a mutual agreement with the Village of Lake in the Hills,” Corrina Bendel Sac said in a statement provided by the ACLU. “UpRising Bakery and Café opened less than a year ago, with the goal of providing a safe and welcoming ‘home away from home’ for all beings.’”

In July, the bakery was at the center of a controversy when it announced that it would host a “Starry Night Brunch Drag,” which was advertised as a family-friendly show with drag performances.

A tsunami of negative comments and complaints soon followed, with the business owners receiving in-person and online threats as well.

The night before the show, a vandal damaged the business, smashing windows and defacing the building with spray paint. Ultimately, the bakery canceled the show.

According to the village police, Joseph Collins was arrested and charged for a hate crime, as well as criminal damage to property. 

In the aftermath of the cancellation, officials in Lake in the Hills said that they had questions about whether the property was zoned for events, and about security that would be required for events to move forward, according to Eater Chicago. Those moves were criticized attacks on free speech by the business owners and by the ACLU.

Lake in the Hills defended the policy changes in the Chicago Tribune, saying that UpRising “fundamentally changed” its business by scheduling more events, something that the owner of the bakery denied.

After the ACLU said that it would consider legal action against the village, an agreement was reached to allow UpRising to host scheduled events, which will include the rescheduled brunch drag performance, according to bakery ownership.

“We thank the community, ACLU, KRV legal, municipalities and our families for helping us reach this goal,” the bakery said in a Facebook post. “We look forward to getting back to baking and holding community-centered events!”

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