The Lantern Haus bar, 7414 Madison St., closed sometime in July, with 99 Haus Balloons, a party balloon supplier operated by owner Patrick Jacknow’s wife, Aubrey Jacknow, taking over the space.

However, other aspects of the story remain a mystery. Patrick Jacknow declined to comment about any aspect of what happened – including whether the bar was closed for good. Mayor Rory Hoskins, who serves as Forest Park’s liquor commissioner, said Jacknow hasn’t surrendered Lantern Haus’ liquor license as of Aug. 1.

99 Haus Balloons launched in 2020, but it previously operated out of the second-story loft space above the bar. In July, all of Lantern Haus’ social media accounts became 99 Haus Balloons accounts. When the Review visited the space on July 29. the sign above the window was the only evidence that Lantern Haus was ever there.

The relationship between the bar and Hoskins has occasionally been contentious, with Hoskins suspending Lantern Haus’ liquor license on July 24, 2020 and July 26, 2021, the latter over a fight that occurred outside the bar the night before. Jacknow appealed that  decision to the Illinois Liquor Control Commission, which ruled in Lantern Haus’ favor. In the decision published on April 27, it found that Lantern Haus did everything it reasonably could to respond to an unexpected situation, and that “Lantern Haus actions or inactions did not cause this fight.” The decision was mostly a formality by that point, since Hoskins had returned the license on Aug. 24, 2021.

On Aug. 23, 2021, Jacknow filed a federal lawsuit alleging that Hoskins treated his bar more harshly than other establishments that were accused of similar types of local ordinance violations. The lawsuit was paused while the state agency considered his appeal. Jacknow told the Review that the federal lawsuit is still ongoing but declined to elaborate.