McKINNEY, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) - As the summer months approach, the city of McKinney has made a move to make their parks more appealing for outdoor concerts, wine festivals and other big events.
John Rowan has called McKinney home for 30 years and said they city has so much to offer, but it's always been behind the times when it's come to its alcohol policies.
"It's really a wonderful place to live, wonderful place to raise a family, has excellent schools, good churches," Rowan said. "When we first moved up here you couldn't even buy beer in McKinney, you'd have to drive up to Melissa to buy beer. Now, with the popularity of the many events that they have down here there's no reason not to add mixed drinks, beer & wine"
Tuesday night, in a 6 to 1 vote, the McKinney City Council approved an ordinance that will allow beer and wine sales during events at ten city parks including: Oak Hollow Golf Course, Towne Lake Recreation Area, Gabe Nesbitt Community Park, Bonnie Wenk Community Park, Craig Ranch Soccer Complex, Al Ruschhaupt Soccer Complex 1 and 2, Old Settler's Park, Finch Park, Mitchell Park.
Each event will be reviewed and approved on a case by case basis. Organizers will have to submit a special event permit application.
"I can say as a business organization where we are trying to promote our city, trying to promote our parks and promote our businesses that this is something that we think would probably be in the best interest of the city,"
McKinney Chamber of Commerce President Lisa Hermes said.
Last year, when the NCAA Division II Football Championship came to town, the city's Chamber of Commerce wanted to host a fan fest in Mitchell Park the night before the game.
The hope was attendees would head to the shops and restaurants in the historic downtown area just down the street afterwords.
The Chamber said since alcohol couldn't be served in the park, the organization opted to host the fan fest elsewhere.
"We want them shopping here and eating here and dining here and hopefully coming back because they enjoy their experience," Hermes sAid.
This ordinance also allows alcohol to be served at events at some rec centers including: Community Center, Senior Recreation Center, Old Settler's Recreation Center, Apex Centre, Courts of McKinney Tennis Center, Parks Administration Offices.
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