Alcohol to be sold at Red Rose Festival

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Beer and wine available for event patrons

By Jesef Williams

Alcohol options will be expanded for adult patrons of this year’s Red Rose Festival.

On Tuesday, March 26, Lancaster City Council unanimously approved a request from Support Services Director Teresa Meeks to allow beer and wine sales at the two-day festival May 17 and 18 in downtown Lancaster.

2012 was the first year the Red Rose Festival featured alcohol. Just beer was available, though.

In late 2011, council revised an existing city ordinance to allow beer and wine to be sold at city-sponsored functions.

However, a vendor would have to apply and be approved for each event.

Like last year, Wing King Cafe in Lancaster will serve as the vendor. Those wishing to buy and drink wine will have to wear special wrist bands and will only be allowed to drink from specific cups.

Also, patrons won’t be able to take the alcohol beyond certain zones. Meeks said the areas will be clearly marked.

On Tuesday, she spoke of last year’s turnout.

“Everything went great,” Meeks said. “It was almost scary it went so well.” 

Lancaster Police Chief Harlean Howard said the area where alcohol can be sold will be expanded this year. That’s because the event, as a whole, has expanded.

She said officers will again be nearby to monitor activity.

“We don’t anticipate any problems,” Howard said. “And if we do have problems, we’ll handle it.”

Councilwoman Jackie Harris asked if children will be allowed in the area where alcohol is sold.

Howard said that’s difficult to regulate because many parents will make sure they’re children are beside them.

“It’s something we can look at, but something that’s hard to do,” Howard said.


Contact reporter Jesef Williams at (803) 283-1152