Shuttered Cecil County wedding venue faces foreclosure auction

A Cecil County wedding venue that shuttered with no notice is foreclosed and will be auctioned this month.

The Winery at Elk Manor, a 157-acre Cecil County wedding venue that closed abruptly in August after the owner's guilty plea to federal tax fraud, will be put up for foreclosure auction this month.

The auction is scheduled for noon Oct. 21 at the front entrance of the Cecil County Circuit Court, 129 E. Main St. in Elkton.

The property on the Elk River in North East includes a 4,716-square-foot manor house, two event halls, four residential buildings, two barns, 17 sheds and a 7-acre winery, according to Alex Cooper Real Estate, which has been contracted as the auction agent. The property's address is 88 Rivers Edge Road.

The closure of the venue, which features a 2,000-foot stretch of riverfront, came with no notice and no mention of refunds to couples who had put down deposits for weddings there.

The owner, Simon Tusha, 43, of Forest Park, pleaded guilty this year to federal tax fraud stemming from more than $2.7 million in bribes prosecutors said he received as a technology executive from data center companies in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands from 2008 to 2010.

He could be sentenced to up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for a fraud conspiracy charge.

Tusha could not be reached to comment, and an attorney representing him in that case did not return a call to her office.

Paul Cooper, the Alex Cooper agent handling the auction, said that the foreclosure was due to an unpaid mortgage. He said he had no further details on Tusha's situation.

Louis Ebert, the substitute trustee, declined to comment when reached Tuesday.

After the venue is sold, all other property of the Winery at Elk Manor LLC and Elk Manor Operations LLC, will be auctioned as well, including the furniture, artwork, tents, accounts, inventory, tools and equipment.

A starting bid will be determined the day of the auction, according to Cooper. Any winning bidder will be required to make an initial deposit of $250,000 on the property.

Copyright © 2019, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad