The first day of the lawsuit involving The Hotel Tavern and the sale of the Old Hotel building in West Jefferson was held December 18 in Ashe County Superior Court in Jefferson.

The Ashe Post and Times reports the building was sold by the Woodie family to Bridgetree Investments in August.

The sale led to a complaint from the business owners of The Hotel Tavern, Guion & Lyle Enterprises, alleging that Bridgetree Investments and former owners the Woodies and Woodie Investments, conducted unfair and deceptive trade practices and breached their contract. The complaint led to counter suits from both Bridgetree and the Woodie family.

Most of the first day of the case involved The Hotel Tavern’s lease. Andy Guion revealed the discussion with Bridgetree Investments owner Mark Beck was secretly recorded, in which Beck warned those in attendance that he was not afraid of a lawsuit.

Also on the tape was an attempt at compromise, but Guion would not agree to move The Hotel Tavern or shut it down for the two-plus years of renovations.

At the end of the day, Judge Michael Duncan ordered the legal teams to submit a written closing argument for his decision.