After eviction in Exeter, Viva to close remaining locations

We 'can no longer continue our operations'

WYOMISSING, Pa. - Nearly a week after losing its lease at the Reading Country Club, Viva has announced plans to close its two remaining locations in Berks County.

JMH Inc., Viva's parent company, said Wednesday that it will cease operations at Fields Kitchen + Bar on Hill Avenue in Wyomissing and at the Green Valley Chateau in Lower Heidelberg Township at the close of business on Saturday.

"Very disappointed, because we like coming here," customer Gloria Copp told 69 News. "We like the food and the people."

"The atmosphere is so pleasant," said customer Rosalie Goldsborough. "It's a great place to sit and listen to the music, and so we're disappointed, very disappointed."

The move comes after Exeter Township evicted Viva from the township-owned country club, where it operated banquet facilities and the Castle Pub Restaurant and Bar. JMH also had its corporate offices there.

"As a result of Exeter's actions, we have been locked out of the Reading Country Club and, as a result, can no longer continue our operations," Viva said in a post on its Facebook page.

"I'm very shocked, because they just changed their menu. They just changed their name to Fields by Viva," said customer Priscilla Price. "I thought they were thriving."

"I hope they change their minds and they keep it open, because I live right up the street, so that's easy," Goldsborough said.

JMH said Exeter wanted it to obtain a separate liquor license for its operations at the country club, despite it already having authorization from the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to sell alcohol through January 8, 2018.

"JMH believed Exeter's position was without merit and not supported by the terms of the lease," the company said in its statement. "Therefore, to avoid unnecessary disruption to JMH's business and to the residents of Berks County it served, JMH filed a lawsuit against Exeter... on November 16, 2017."

JMH said Exeter responded by initiating a lawsuit of its own.

"We are disappointed that Exeter is using taxpayer dollars to fund a litigation strategy that we believe is contrary to established landlord-tenant law in Pennsylvania," JMH said.

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