Topless coffee shop owner not ready to give up

Posted June 08, 2009, at 9:31 a.m.

VASSALBORO, Maine — The owner of a topless coffee shop destroyed by fire last week in Vassalboro, Maine, says he plans to have clothed waitresses collect donations in the parking lot to raise money to rebuild.

Under town zoning rules, Donald Crabtree would need a new permit to start operating his business from a trailer or other structure on the property. He told the Kennebec Journal he is going to set up a tent instead, and have employees hand out free donuts and coffee next to a collection jar.

Crabtee’s home and business were destroyed in a deliberately set fire Wednesday, just hours after he had talked with local officials about making the business more like a strip club.

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