TroubleShooters: Wedding venue suddenly shut down

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A North Philadelphia family contacted Action News TroubleShooters after the venue for their daughter's wedding reception suddenly shut down. (WPVI)

Wedding planning is stressful enough, but imagine if the venue for your reception suddenly shut down.

That's exactly what happened to a North Philadelphia family who turned to the Action News Troubleshooters for help.

Last September, Karen and Carl Richburg gave the facility manager at the North American Motor Inns on City Avenue a $200 deposit for their daughter's June 13th nuptials.

When the couple returned this past March, they paid another $300.

But in May, when they went to pay the balance, employees told them the banquet facility had suddenly closed.

"Now everything has to be reverted. We have to tell people that its not going to be here, and its kind of an embarrassment as parents," said Carl.

To make matters worse, they were also informed the facility manager had dashed with their cash.

"It's stressful. It's very stressful," said Carl.

The Richburgs tried to contact the manager, but had no luck.

They also reached out to police, and then the Action News Troubleshooters.

Action News did some digging to find out what happened to not only Richburgs deposit, but everyone else's who'd booked at the shuttered banquet facility.

The Troubleshooters learned the facility was shut down because the former facility manager, Ashok Bhatt, cut ties with the building's owner.

And the new leasee doesn't plan to hold functions in the ballroom.

"We are just looking for the small deposit that we put on it returned, and all this can be cleared. That's all we want," said Carl.

When we reached out to Bhatt, he told us he's doing everything he can to track down and return money to those with whom he had contracts.

And he promised the Troubleshooters he'd give the Richburgs a full refund.

"It turned out great at the end. We got our money back," said Karen.

"It was Channel 6 news that really got the investigation running and contacted the people that we needed because it was a very confusing situation," said Carl.

The Richburgs were able to secure a new venue at the last minute and their daughter Tiffany's wedding reception was just beautiful.

If you're owed a deposit for a function at the North American Motor Inn, Bhatt says he wants to hear from you. You can reach him by email at

Related Topics:
familywhat's the dealconsumertroubleshooterhotelphilly newsweddingsNorthwest Philadelphia
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