View Full Version : State Liquor Stores

05-25-1999, 10:46 PM
Okay, what's up with *that*? What will be next, State House of Sin or State Opium Dens? In some states, the only entity allowed to sell this controlled substance is good ole' Johnny Law himself. Best of all, these stores are set up in places you must *drive* to get to.

What's up with this? To what other states, aside my beloved adopted Ohio, has this menace spread? And weren't we working on DE-centralization?

05-26-1999, 07:49 AM
I have been in a few states that have this. Pennsylvania and Virginia. I know there are others. The reason for this is probably economic, if the state sells it, they get a bigger piece of the pie than if they just tax it. Although, when it was set up, they probably gave some sort of excuse like protection of the children, or to prevent too many liquor stores opening up and flooding the market or something like that.

For a real interesting perspective, go from a state with state controlled alcohol to one where drive-thru liquor stores are allowed.

I doubt seriously that state controlled stores do anything more than bring in more cash for the state.

05-26-1999, 10:16 AM
I've seen these in Penn. and Virginia too, although IIRC the ones in Virginia were for hard liquor only - you could get beer and wine at the local Food Lion. (Which was a shock, coming from a place where EVERYTHING was sold at the liquor store.)

In Montgomery County, in Maryland, the liquor stores are owned by the county. Hence, it's the only county you can buy beer in a supermarket. (Well, in the area, anyway. I'm not sure about Baltimore or Western MD.) I think the argument is something along the lines of what opera said - it brings in more money for the county. (Whether they need it with the tax rate they charge is another story entirely... ;) )

"There is such a fine line between stupid and clever." -- David St. Hubbins, Spinal Tap

05-26-1999, 11:06 AM
Any of you ever been to Utah, land of annoying liquor laws? Not only can you only buy liquor at state stores, but the state stores have funky hours, and it's actually against the law to keep things refridgerated... like not having the ability to buy cold beer is going to make all us drunks quit drinking. In actuality, it makes us drink more red wine (served warm, of course) out of frustration.

Not only that, but most parts of the state don't have bars. We spent a good three hours trying to stop for a drink, and the only place you could get one is at a restaurant, and they can't sell you a beer without a food purchase.

<sigh> I long for good ol' Michigan, where the corner gas station sold beer, wine, and hard liquor 'til 2 am....

05-26-1999, 12:21 PM
Where I grew up in rural Oklahoma, you could only get liquor at a restaurant if you belong to a 'private' club. Which basically meant you had to sign a little business card for that restaurant and show it to get your drinks. You were supposed to bring your own bottle and they would mix you a drink out of your own bottle. What a joke.

As far as the liquor stores... let's just say, "here's joke number two". No liquor stores could have refrigerators in them, they couldn't sell premixed drinks, they couldn't sell anything EXCEPT liquor. You had to get your cokes and candy and gum at a different store. The sign out front could only say "Liquor Store", and the letters on the sign could only be a maximum of 6 inches tall. (although the sign could be as big as you wanted). We didn't really have bars, but we had taverns where you could drink all the 3.2 beer in the world. You had to be 21 to go in there, but you only had to be 18 to buy 3.2 beer at the quickstop. I don't live there now, but I think most of that has changed.


05-26-1999, 12:27 PM
You gays can consider yourselvs lucky for here in Iceland the liqor shops are open from nine to five....

They are run be the state with prices from the state.

For ex: Bottle of vodka $43
Sixpack of beer: $16,5

Your in trouble were in trouble


05-26-1999, 02:09 PM
It gets even more convoluted in PA. You can only buy wine and hard liquor in state stores, but they can't sell nonalcoholic mixers at the same place--only in grocery stores. Presumably this keeps kids from running in to buy a bottle of tonic water and being corrupted by seeing all that booze. Beer, at least in my small town, could only be purchased by the case at drive-through distributors (although bars could sell you a six-pack). All of these had to be closed on Sundays (separation of church and state--yeah, right).

I also lived in Ohio for a while, where beer and wine could be sold in grocery stories and convenience stores (although the latter had to lock the cases on Sundays.) The weirdest thing, though, was that groceries could also sell gin, etc., as long as it was watered down to be no higher proof than wine.

How do these laws get passed?

05-26-1999, 04:21 PM
Hey, Melatonin . . . what do you mean you have to drive to get there? Like they intentionally placed a liquor store in the middle of nowhere?

I live in Ohio, and the closest liquor store is on a residential street.

05-26-1999, 05:38 PM
New Hampshire's got state liquor stores as well. Beer is freely available in convenience stores, groceries and supermarkets, but for the hard stuff you gotta go to the Green Front (as we Downeast Yankees like to call 'em) and stock up there. Fortunately, I lived in a border town (Nashua) and could easily get to Massachusetts, where no such restrictions existed and the prices were a little less evil on the wallet.

All Hail Unca Cecil, or the next best thing available!

05-26-1999, 06:18 PM
"Hey, Melatonin . . . what do you mean you have to drive to get there? Like they
intentionally placed a liquor store in the middle of nowhere?"

Understand my perspective here. In all the places I've lived since coming of age (Florida, Moscow) liquor sales are a private business. In Florida, there were generally two liquor stores located within a few blocks of home and in Moscow- well, you figure it out. In FL, liquor stores sell all sorts of alcohol, but other stores can only sell wine and beer.

The liquor store here is located somewhere downtown like, in an area I have no particular desire to visit. It took me a couple of months before I figured out where it was. And, yes, it has probably reduced my consumption of gin and vodka in particular. But it hasn't really had much effect on my alcohol consumption as a whole.

Okay, I'm really just whining. I admit it. All I really want is the freedom to wake up from an afternoon nap, stroll on down to the store, pick up a liter of Smirnoff and swill.

05-26-1999, 08:53 PM
In Canada, hard liquor is only available at government liquor stores, but cold beer & wine stores can sell, well, cold beer & wine.

I've never found this to be a particular problem. There's a liquor store conveniently located on the ground floor of the building in which I work, which is convenience at its best. The only thing that bugs me about liquor stores here in BC is that they don't take credit cards - some sort of Big Brother thing trying to stop people from going into debt for booze, I guess.

05-26-1999, 09:21 PM
In New Hampshire, along I-95 (I think), there _IS_ a liquor store in the "middle of nowhere". At least, I can't recall seeing anything around it; there may have been a town a few miles off the interstate, but to all appearances it was a liquor store with its own highway exit. It also had a highway sign announcing it of the huge variety more commonly used to let you know that you're approaching Los Angeles or the city of New York (you know, the stretch-across-several-lanes sort).

I thought it was particularly amusing that it was located not too far from the Massachusetts border and on the southbound side: "You can drink and drive if you like, as long as you're headed towards MA."

The liquor laws that permit the sale of watered-down gin, etc. probably regulate only the concentration of alcohol allowed and not the specific type, so it's not THAT weird (actually, the concept of a store WANTING to sell watered-down gin -- or of anyone wanting to BUY it -- seems stranger to me than the fact that they'd be allowed to do so).

In some states, liquor regulations are set by the county. This leads to some truly bizarre situations (for instance, I remember hearing that the Jack Daniels distillery is in a "dry" county; they can make it there, but they can't serve it).

I grew up in Missouri near the Kansas border (well, about 50 miles from it). At the time the legal drinking age in MO was 21, but in KS it was only 18 for beer, so a lot of people I knew would make the drive (not me: I don't like beer, and the drinking age for the good stuff was 21 in both places). The problem, of course, is that if you bring it home to drink later, you can be arrested for possession, and if you drink it there, you have to drive home in that condition, which is ALSO illegal.

05-26-1999, 09:33 PM
In Texas, liquor laws can vary by city. So in Tarrant county (where I live) one city allows sale of any kind of alcohol, although only liquor stores sell hard liquor. In other cities, only beer and wine can be sold, and yet others only beer can be sold. In Arlington (TX) you couldn't even buy wine coolers, leading to that abomination, malt coolers (Yech!) So Melatonin, not only do I have to drive to the liquor store, but I have to drive to another freakin' city! And you know that the liquor stores on the borders are tres expensive. Every time one of the 'burbs decides to open up the laws a bit, the liquor store owners get with the local preachers and get it voted out.

Mastery is not perfection but a journey, and the true master must be willing to try and fail and try again

05-26-1999, 09:46 PM
I think that liquor laws are controlled by individual counties within each state as a rule. One county may outlaw all alcohol sales past 12 midnight and on Sundays, whereas another permits sales until 2am, 5 days a week. But State Liquor Stores, we'd assume from the name, are something mandated by the state.

Zyada, I used to live in Houston. As I recall, any fourteen year old with breasts could purchase beer at a convenience store. The laws may have changed since then (ha).

05-26-1999, 09:48 PM
"whereas another permits sales until 2am, 5 days a week."

Erm, let's make that "until 2am, *7* days a week."

More dramatic that way, eh?

05-26-1999, 09:51 PM
Zyada, I used to live in Houston.

I'm sorry!

Mastery is not perfection but a journey, and the true master must be willing to try and fail and try again

05-26-1999, 09:58 PM
Get this! I forget what the laws were at the time in Indiana, but when I was a kid my great aunt went to the grocery store to buy vanilla and they wouldn't sell it to her because it was Sunday! That's harsh!

05-26-1999, 10:22 PM
quote: Zyada, I used to live in Houston

quote: I'm sorry!

Yeah, me too. But it's been almost 9 years, and I'm slowly but surely getting over it.

05-26-1999, 11:02 PM
I don't know if this applies throughout California, but I've lived in Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Deigo and LA counties and it applies to all of those...

we can get any type of liquor at the grocery store (hard alcohol, wine, beer, etc), at the corner market, sometimes even at a gas station. I think that bars have to stop serving alcohol at 2am - not sure if stores do as well (I think they do - for some reason I recall 1:45 am last minute beer runs). And you can buy it any day of the week. Most restaurants sell, at minimum, beer and whine. The good ones can also mix you a nice drink.

jeez@all those states with restrictions - I think I'd go nuts

05-27-1999, 01:07 AM
For the record, here in Virginia, you can buy beer and wine in grocery stores, but you have to go to a liquor store to buy the hard stuff.

I had the reverse Virginia-Pennsylvania experience. My wife is from Mercer, PA, and the first time we went to her home, I was astonished to find that you couldn't buy beer in convenience stores and grocery stores...

05-27-1999, 03:37 AM
Most unreal law re alcohol (IMO) -- in CT, all packies close at 8 PM!

05-27-1999, 12:44 PM
My parents toured a bourbon distillary in KY and were disapointed to discover that it was in a dry county so they couldn't taste the bourbon the way they tasted wine in the Finger Lakes area of NY. Further investigation into touring bourbon distillaries has yeilded the information that nowhere in KY can the distillary provide free samples of bourbon. (Although, if you went to one that isn't in a dry county, you might be able to buy bourbon there. My parents don't drink much alcohol at all, so weren't interested in buying any, but were curious as to what it tastes like).

05-27-1999, 02:22 PM
Speaking of dry areas, I used to live in Audubon, NJ. The township was dry, but every adjacent town was wet. That meant the perimiter of Audubon was surrounded with bars and liquor stores.

Similarly, NJ sells beer, wine, and hard alcohol in the same store, and at reasonable prices. PA has state liquor stores and beer distributors (only sells beer by the case or keg). This means there's a steady stream of Philadelphians going over the bridge to NJ to buy beer&booze, then coming back into the state with it. On paper this is illegal, but the cops seldom enforce this law.

05-27-1999, 02:22 PM
voguevixen: was the problem with buying vanilla on Sunday related to a liquor law, or was it a more general "blue law"?

Where I grew up there was a blue law in effect at the time which prohibited the sale of "nonessential" items on Sundays (the way I had it explained to me, you could buy a can of beans but not a canopener). I could believe that under a similar law, vanilla extract might be considered "nonessential".

05-27-1999, 05:12 PM
Melatonin, I presume you're referring to Moscow, Russia? When were you there? In St. Petersburg (1995-96) hard spirits were available pretty much anywhere you chose to look. As was beer...

All Hail Unca Cecil, or the next best thing available!

05-27-1999, 07:04 PM
I was there in 97, which I gather was pretty much the high point of the Post-Soviet era. No problem whatsoever finding alcohol of any sort, for the most part. There were at least two stores on the MSU campus alone selling all variety of spirits. Also, you could go down to the firemen's quarters and buy wine and beer if it was late and you were too lazy to go all the way to the Metro market.

Sometime in the middle of 97, I think, some sort of law pertaining to vodka was passed, and it became illegal to sell it out of any place of business having no doors. Or something like that. It just suddenly seemed that one had to actually go to a store of some sort to purchase it.

I didn't really have any problem in Peter, either. Course, there's something in my magnetic field that *attracts* alcohol. . .

Here's something to *really* make you drool: I found that, if you know where to go, there are some places that actually have refrigerators and you can get a (no, GASP!) .....cold..... beer in the summer.

05-27-1999, 08:55 PM
Torq -- No, they told her she couldn't buy it because it had alcohol in it...thus foiling her big plans for a vanilla kegger, I suppose!

05-28-1999, 12:33 PM
That probably was to kill the kiosk business - they probably meant doors for customer access. The street in front of the SPbGU dorm I lived in had three or four kiosks that sold hard booze, among other things - all close by. Student heaven! *L*

All Hail Unca Cecil, or the next best thing available!

05-28-1999, 05:58 PM
The liquor store here is located somewhere downtown like, in an area I have no particular desire to visit. It took me a couple of months before I figured out where it was.

There's one on High Street, between Hudson and Dodridge/Ackerman. If you hit the White Castle, you've gone about a block too far. This is within walking distance of my place, so it's not too incredibly far for you.

05-30-1999, 09:20 AM
In Canada, hard liquor is only available at government liquor stores, but cold beer & wine stores can sell, well, cold beer & wine.

It gets better; we in Quebec are quite pleased to be the only province in Canada where beer and wine can be gotten at the dépanneur (convenience store). I don't drink, but I still enjoy the distinction.

05-30-1999, 10:46 AM
I moved from Ohio to Nevada in the 1980's and I marveled at the practice of selling hard liquor in supermarkets, drug stores, and convenience stores. You can actually buy a bottle of vodka 24 hours a day. Of course if you go to a casino, sit at a slot machine, put money in, a cocktail waitress will come by and give you free drinks. When I lived in Ohio, they didn't sell alcohol on Sundays--only 3.2 beer. (I don't know if they still do this.)

What if the Hokey-Pokey is really what it's all about?

05-30-1999, 11:06 AM
No liquor on Sunday in Ohio, still. When I grew up in Michigan I had heard that Michigan laws were restrictive (the state liquor board decides which brands may be sold!). Michigan is wide open compared to Ohio. Liquor is sold only in liquor stores (which were about 50% state outlets until the privatization push a few years ago); no sales from groceries or drug stores; no purchases using credit cards; no Sunday sales. Wine can be sold on Sunday (after 1:00 p.m.) only if approved by the local voting district. (My county had no Sunday wine sales at all for the first eight years I lived here. One supermarket chain was able to secure wine sales and the competing chain in a different voting district had to beg their voters for the same rights for a year.) Beer sales are more open. Credit cards may be used for beer and wine.


05-30-1999, 03:15 PM
I like this thread.

Cities, counties and the state regulate alcohol sales in Texas. For most of the state you can buy beer & wine at stores from 7 AM until midnight Monday through Friday, 7 AM Saturday until 1 AM Sunday and noon until midnight Sunday. You can’t buy booze at a bar and leave with it. Hard liquor sales terminate at 9 PM Monday through Saturday and don’t happen on Sunday, at liquor stores. You can always go to a bar or restaurant and get hard liquor on Sunday. The bars close @ 2 AM all week long (I guess it’s a good sign that I don’t know when they open).

My college girlfriend was from a dry county in East Texas; that meant the locals had to make a 50-mile trip on weekend evenings to the next county. I think this arrangement probably promoted drinking and driving, but at least you knew which lane to keep an eye on.

I drove a hack while going to college in Austin and soon learned that a several of the other all-night cabbies kept a six-pack or two in the fridge at home to accommodate late night requests. There was also a moonshiner in East Austin who would, for $5, provide a gallon jug of vaguely purple “wine” in the wee hours. I tried to avoid her patrons.

I’m guessing the crazy quilt of laws is a product of a combination of local regulation, the rheostat school of social engineering (same place we got our strategy for Vietnam and Kosovo) and somebody’s financial interests. Banning alcohol in your city doesn’t accomplish a lot if it’s available a few miles away. Other regulations seem to based on the idea that if we make it twice as hard to get it, maybe they’ll only drink half as much. In reality I think people just adapt to a certain degree of difficulty and if it becomes too difficult to comply with the law, large numbers just start ignoring the law. In Texas we had, until the early 90’s, a three tier system wherein producers, distributors and retailers were supposed to be independent, but there was an exception that allowed anybody who just happened to decide to open a marine life theme park of so many acres in Bexar County to be both a producer and retailer. Some sharpies at Anheuser-Busch saw the opportunity and, voila, Sea World – where you can scope out a dolphin while chugging your Bud.

We’ve also just (effective in September) cranked the DWI blood alcohol threshold down to .08% and (unsure on this) I read a news report that it will also become illegal to have even a closed container in the passenger compartment. I guess that means it goes in the trunk for the ride home from the store (hatchback owners, …engine compartment?). When this decade started it was still legal to consume alcohol while you drove and it was not unusual to see people driving with a beer sitting on the dashboard. Don’t think that I have a cavalier attitude about DWI; I’m a steady (or unsteady, as the case may be) patron of taxicabs for everyone’s benefit.

Just a few blocks from where I live here in Houston (Z & M: sorry you didn’t like it; I love the place – 2nd favorite place to drink in Texas is Austin) there was for years a speakeasy. It was a house on a residential street w/a little (just like in the movies) peephole and you weren’t getting in unless you were with somebody the bartender knew. It did not close @ 2 AM.

New Orleans is, I think, still a 24 hour town. Decades ago an acquaintance’ band moved there when they got a steady gig playing the 6 AM to 10 AM slot at a bar – I’ve wondered what that crowd is like.

Sign on a liquor store, Valdez, Alaska, 1986: Hours: 7 AM to 5 AM

Since tomorrow is Memorial Day, I should note that national holidays seem to be optional for liquor stores; most are closed but not all.

Enjoy the holiday, folks!

05-30-1999, 06:14 PM
Beatle: New Orleans was still a 24 hour town last time I lived there (3 years ago). In fact, I lived about 2 blocks away from Igor's, wich is a bar that had been open 24 hours of every single day since the year I was born (1963). They don't even close down for the hurricanes (they can't close, there are no _locks_ on the doors!).

It was about 4 years ago that they made the drive-through daiquiri places shut down, though. Before that, you could drive up to a window and buy a daiquiri in a styrofoam cup with a straw in it. What a town.

Now I live in a dry county in KY. Huge culture shock. Now I have to _drive_ about 5 miles into the next county to buy beer or whiskey. I went into a pizza place when I first got here, and without thinking, I ordered a pizza and a pitcher of beer. The waitress acted like I was crazy. She actually seemed to be shocked, as if I had asked her to strip naked or something. Wierd.

On Sunday, I have to drive to Louisville (about 30 miles). Louisville stops selling beer between the hours of 4-6 a.m. on Sunday. Try to figure out _that_ kind of logic.


05-30-1999, 10:48 PM
(Z & M: sorry you didn’t like it; I love the place – 2nd favorite place to drink in Texas is Austin)

Good! Always a good thing to like where you live. Have to admit I had a very bad intro to Houston. I dated a guy who lived in Pasedena & around Hobby, so most of what I saw was the scumpit sections of town.

And our Gulf Coast office is near Gunspoint mall.

Mastery is not perfection but a journey, and the true master must be willing to try and fail and try again

05-31-1999, 12:56 AM
w-a-y back there torq posted:

I remember hearing that the Jack Daniels distillery is in a "dry" county; they can make it there, but they can't serve it.

--Yes. I did an interview with the head distiller of JD and that question came up.
He said that the population of that whole county wouldn't be able to support one liquor store. So they (the Jack Daniel people) never saw any reason to politic for repeal.

05-31-1999, 01:56 AM
Yikes! Where do you people live, Russia? No wait.. Russia had laxer laws. Anyway, here in good ole Chicago suburbia, I can get about any sort of alcohol from the grocery store, liquor store, drug store, or bar. Except for them not selling after midnight and having to wait until noon on a Sunday to buy alcohol, it's pretty much restriction free.

"I guess it is possible for one person to make a difference, although most of the time they probably shouldn't."

05-31-1999, 11:43 AM

Every large city has its better and worse parts. If you were splitting most of your time here between Pasadena/Hobby and Greeenspoint, you're obviously an I-45 veteran as well. None of the above are on my "show the visitors" list.

I'm sure people find much to enjoy in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, but my perception is colored by my experience. I go there often but all I ever do there is fly into Love, rent a car, battle the traffic to get to someone's office, do whatever I have to as quickly as possible so I can race back to Love and try to get near the front of the herd at Gate 4 and go home. On the subject of the metroplex, and trying to stay vaguely on thread, I'll note that when I do have to stay overnight the plethora of smaller municipalities w/their own liquor laws makes it an unknown for an out-of-towner whether any particular restaurant will sell you a drink w/dinner (sometimes you have to buy a membership in their club; I'm a proud member of a JoJo's somewhere up there).


06-06-1999, 06:54 AM
Sorry to respond to a thread that's been dormant, but I was out of town for a week, and it's taking forever to get caught up. Anyway, I *liked* the state-store setup in Pennsylvania. The stores only sold liquor, and they always had guards. I seem to remember that they were armed, but I'm not sure. Anyway, I liked that they were so tight, because anyplace that sells liquor is going to have a lot of money in the till, and I was secure in the knowledge that they almost certainly wouldn't be held up. The staff was polite and friendly, too, because they only had to ring up your liquor purchase, not juggle that with punching out lottery tickets and changing the expiration dates on lunch meat.
While I was living there, some bluenose was petitioning to get Allegheny County to bar the sale of twelve-packs of beer (by beer distributors, which were a separate entity), on the grounds that twelves were easier to carry, and people would be more inclined to get one, carry it to a park or someplace public, drink it, and then do a crime. I thought that was a huge exercise in futility. If one is truly an alcoholic, portability is not an issue. Plus which, I think restriction to cases or kegs only would have inspired people to stockpile, using the logic that transporting two or three cases wasn't that much more difficult than one, if you had a car or a couple of pals, and you might as well get all three at once, thinking you could make them last for a few weeks...then saying, "Hey, we've got plenty here..."
Anyway, here in LA, I only buy liquor at grocery stores or at stores that specialize in liquor (plus mixers and snax). The selection is better, but my real objection to convenience stores selling liquor is that, if I have to make a cigarette run in the evening, I would prefer not to stand in line with the kind of people who buy malt liquor at 11:30.

Remember, I'm pulling for you; we're all in this together.
---Red Green

06-06-1999, 10:44 AM
When I managed hotels, I traveled to many different states. I seem to recall WVa selling everything in their grocery stores (Huntington). In Atlanta, liquor stores were free enterprise. In Columbus, OH, you couldn't get any alcohol on Sundays. In Augusta, GA it was the same unless you bought it from a restaurant/bar and after 1pm. I always loved Florida with their 2-for-1 Happy Hours!

But, here in the HQ of the Baptists (& Jesse Helms) liquor prices are set by the state but it is up to the counties to set hours for the liquor stores and to determine whether they are "dry" or "wet". We can buy beer & wine after 1pm on Sundays from the grocery/convenient stores but not liquor.

We still have some counties with Blue Laws - you can buy the diaper but you can not buy the safety pin (because it is "hardware").

I just adapt to my surroundings and always make sure I have plenty on hand!

06-06-1999, 02:19 PM
Jack Daniels is in Lynchburg Tennessee in Moore County which is indeed dry.

It's another fun little north/south culture shock as benefit from marriage to my Michigan born husband. We went up there over Thanksgiving to visit with several of his friends who were also in town and we got to go to my favorite store Meijer's and I was just amazed that we could buy our chips and our wine and our beer and our liquor and, oh yeah, milk and cereal for the next morning all in one place. I felt like taking off my shoes and chewing hayseed I looked like such a country bumpkin gaping at the possiblities.

06-12-1999, 12:49 PM
Wow, I never realized how good we had it in Kentucky. Don't tell the folks in Frankfort about the state-run package store thing, though--they would love to jump on that!

The wet/dry issue is a pain in the arse sometimes. The one-horse I grew up in is dry, but the next county over just went wet a few years ago. This spawned the now-infamous "Beer Trailer", which is situated on the county line across from the Torrent Church of God. The last time I drove by they were also selling Beanie Babies.

In general, in a wet county, you can buy beer at the grocery store, but wine and the hard stuff have to be bought elsewhere. Wine coolers, by the way, are no longer called such; they are actually a malt beverage, like beer, so if they don't call themselves wine coolers they can be sold as beer.

Dr. J

Oh, and I don't think it's true anymore, but it used to be that Christian Co. was wet but Bourbon Co. was dry.

06-15-1999, 01:13 AM
Here in Chicago, it is very easy to get a precinct voted "dry." I don't mean a ban on possessing or consuming alcohol, but a ban on its sale, both in packages and for drinking on-premises. In other words, when a precinct is voted dry, all existing liquor licenses in that precinct are revoked and no new ones may be issued.

Now for those who don't know Chicago political organization, a precinct is NOT a police division (police stations serve "districts" not "precincts"). Instead, the city is divided into 50 wards (each represented by an alderman on the City Council), and a precinct is a subdivision of a ward. There are over 2500 precincts!

What has happened over the last 5-10 years is that a lot of people who used to live in the suburbs have moved back into the city. While many understood exactly what they were getting into, some don't grasp the concept of "when in Rome, do as the Romans do." They object to the noise, traffic, and other side effects of the many bars, nightclubs, restaurants, and other night life locations (that the same people patronized when they lived in the suburbs but went into the city on Saturday nights to party!) So they start a petition drive to vote the precinct dry, to get rid of the "problem" bars. You don't need a lot of signatures to get the prohibition vote on the next referendum ballot. And if the measure carries, which isn't hard since precincts are so small, not only will the "problem" bar lose its liquor license, but every bar and store in the precinct that WAS obeying the law and policing their customers loses their licenses along with the "bad" bars! So many precincts have done this that some people call it a new Prohibition! In Chicago, no less.

To show how bad this gets, the famous House of Blues is in Marina City, right across the river from the Loop itself. The neighborhood has dozens of bars and nightclubs, as well as restaurants that serve beer and wine with meals to the daily office crowd at lunch. It also has several new loft condo buildings, and the new residents of these lofts have started a petition drive to vote the precinct dry because they object to the crowds and noise from House of Blues! HELLO! You're in the same neighborhood as the Merchandise Mart and several other office buildings, hotels, theaters, and art galleries. The L goes through the middle of your neighborhood. Hell, you moved right across the river from one of the busiest downtowns on the face of the Earth! And you're going to shut down a popular bar due to noise and crowds?!?! Get realistic, people!

But the problem is that they CAN do it, without much difficulty. Because they want peace and quiet in the very hub of a metropolis of seven million (again, get real!), they can shut down several world-famous establishments that entertain thousands of customers, employ hundreds of people, and raise millions of dollars in tax revenue.

11-09-2004, 01:22 PM
In PA the state changed the name of our liquor stores from State Liquor Store to Wine & Spirits Shoppe to make them more consumer friendly! What a joke! Shopping in them feels like shopping in the Soviet Union! The staff usually don't know jack about what they're selling. And they sell wine and spirits and only wine and spirits. No beer! Though recently they're started to sell corksrews and wine-sleeves. The Liquor Control Board recently annouced a plan to open stores inside supermarkets in major cities. And about 10% of all liquor stores, private wineries, & beer distibuters are open on Sundays. They should privatize all the stores and let beer & wine be sold in supermarkets. Oh and does any other state require you to be 21+ to buy non-alcoholic beer and wine?