Wednesday, December 21, 2005

No alcohol for New Year's? No way!

I don't know if you heard, but Charlotte Center City Partners announced that vendors will not be selling alcohol on the streets for the big Downtown Countdown. Instead Charlotte Center City Partners wants revelers to go to restaurants, hotels and clubs for their alcohol fix. The keepers of Uptown also asked the news media to remind all the lushes that it is illegal to walk around with an open container of alcohol unless they're on private property or in a closed festival area with an alcohol permit. Apparently, the beer-coozie clutching Panther's and Bobcats fans think they're on Bourbon Street.

Moira Quinn of Charlotte Center City partners says the NYE switch is so that Downtown Countdown doesn't steal alcohol sales from businesses. She assured me that the NYE change doesn't mean alcohol won't be sold at other uptown street events. She also says the open container law is old school.

I'm a little bummed about the alcohol-free countdown, but I'm even more disappointed about the open container law reminder. Walking around with cups of beer or Bloody Mary is part of the ballgame tradition. You tailgate with friends and carry your cocktail or brewski from the asphalt party to the gate. Then you guzzle your drink before you go inside. It's all part of the game-day ritual, like players taping up their ankles. Ball games are special events. It's not like people are drinking beer on the streets uptown every night.

Partiers, am I the only who thinks the city is being a bit too uptight? Post your comments below. (P.S. no cursing, your post will be rejected.)