Once again, the city of Mandan is telling a local business to remove artwork from its facade. And once again the entire issue doesn't seem to have been handled particularly well.

This time it's the Lonesome Dove nightclub on Memorial Highway. The Tribune reports the city's Architectural Review Commission have ordered the club to take down the Western-themed mural on the streetside wind block.

Now for the backstory: the commission had cited the club in October for the mural. Shortly after the bar's owners applied for a permit. The commission denied the permit based on the city's mural guidelines: "no mural shall convey a commercial message."

The city code also says: "no wall sign or mural shall be painted on any building without prior approval from the [architectural commission]."

The city then directed the owners to apply for a "sign" permit. The reasoning: the mural wasn't really a mural, as it advertises the business.

The December application was also shot down.

Lonesome Dover co-owner Brian Berube said at a meeting this week that at the time the sign was in the works, they never heard of the commission. "We would have contacted them," he said.

This all comes just a few weeks after the flap involving the storefront art at the Many Visions Apparel Store.

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