It used to be that only New Orleans and Las Vegas allowed people to carry a drink outdoors and imbibe in public. Now cities all over the country, mostly in traditionally conservative states, are loosening their laws.
"Beginning in the 1950s, many cities banned open containers of alcohol in public. Now Canton [Ohio] and several other cities are bringing it back — in a controlled fashion — to appeal to millennials and attract tourists and conventions," according to an article by Tim Henderson.
"In addition to Canton, other Ohio cities including Lancaster, Lorain, Middletown and Toledo launched public drinking areas this year, as did Mississippi cities such as Biloxi and Gulfport," adds Henderson. The changes in local laws followed changes to state laws in both states. But those aren’t the only example of public drinking districts created in the recent years. Nashville, Tennessee; Lincoln, Nebraska; and Mobile, Alabama have all created similar public drinking districts.
Henderson focuses on the example of Canton, which is faced with a shrinking population, currently at 60 percent of its past peak. There, as in in other cities, public drinking is considered a nightlife attraction for Millennials. The article also relies on the testimony of Jim Peters, founder of the Responsible Hospitality Institute.
Hat tip to Barbara Eldredge for sharing the article.
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