Berlin Looking To Adjust Alcohol Events

BERLIN – Town officials have developed a handful of new practices to address concerns related to special events involving alcohol.

Last Monday, Ivy Wells, the town’s economic development director, outlined ways the town will work to ensure alcohol, particularly alcohol carried in by patrons, doesn’t cause problems at special events in Berlin. Since concerns were voiced by Councilman Thom Gulyas following the town’s New Year’s Eve celebration, Wells has been working with the Berlin Police Department on ways to improve events involving alcohol.

“It’s a great start,” Gulyas said. “Thank you for working on this.”

In January, Gulyas told the council he was approached by several residents who were concerned about littering and public urination associated with the New Year’s Eve event. Police Chief Arnold Downing said he thought outside alcohol was an issue and Mayor Gee Williams asked Wells to work with the town’s police officers to develop ways to improve future events at which alcohol was permitted.

According to Wells’ report, the town will now post yard signs during special events to remind attendees that outside alcohol isn’t permitted. She says that while similar signs have been posted downtown during previous events, attendees may have not seen them until they had already carried alcohol to that point.

“If they’re alerted where they’re parking, they’ll know,” she said. “Extra signs would help.”

The town will also begin adding language regarding the prohibition of outside alcohol to posters and advertisements for town events that do include drinking.

Wells said police would also be monitoring the perimeter of the area in which drinking is permitted during future events.

The next special event set to include the sale of alcohol is May Day Play Day, which takes place downtown May 19.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.