A Valentine’s Day dance in the town of Henryetta, Oklahoma had to be canceled after it was discovered that an old city ordinance, still in effect, bans dancing within 500 feet of a church.
It doesn’t seem like anyone actually has a problem with dancing anymore… but the dance location, Rosie LaVon’s Marketplace, is within 300 feet of a church. So the dancers and organizers would technically be breaking the law.
Born and raised in Henryetta, Mayor Jennifer Clason had always heard about the old city ordinance.
“It’s never been enforced my entire life,” said Clason. “But I’d never looked at it because it never came up.”
So she pulled out the books, and sure enough, there it was.
“It’s an antiquated ordinance, no one has ever looked at it to change it,” said Clason.
The city council may end up repealing the ordinance later this month, but the dance will have to be rescheduled.
Even if the ordinance is no longer in effect, it makes you wonder why it was ever adopted at all. What exactly did church leaders fear?
I guess we’ll find out when they turn this story into a script for Footloose 2.
(Image via Shutterstock. Thanks to Scott for the link)