Franklin to Allow Beer/Wine Garden at Applefest Despite Despite Marshall’s Disapproval

| August 7, 2018

FRANKLIN, Pa. (EYT) – Despite vehement opposition from Councilman James Marshall, the Franklin Council is allowing a request from TrAils To Ales Brewery to close off the alleyway between TrAils to Ales and R Bandana Winery for a beer/wine garden during Applefest.

Under a list of conditions offered by City staff after meeting with TrAils To Ales, the beer/wine garden will be in place from Noon to 6 p.m. both Friday, Oct. 5, and Saturday, Oct. 6, but will not be allowed to be in place Sunday, Oct. 7, because of the pedestrian traffic caused by the car show, according to City Manager Tracey Jamieson.

Additional conditions include a 99-person maximum in the beer/wine garden, no smoking in the area, all cleanup must be completed by TrAils To Ales and be done by 6:15 p.m. both days so the alleyway can reopen, emergency exits at both TrAils To Ales and R Red Bandana that lead into the alleyway must remain unblocked, controlled access to the garden must be done at both ends of the alleyway and be the responsibility of TrAils to Ales, proper insurances must be in place and the garden must be constructed in a way to allow for emergency access to the alleyway if needed.

Jamieson also said that TrAils to Ales has been notified that the city may impose a fee for use of the alleyway as well.

Marshall, however, just as he was when a request came for the Franklin Blues and BBQ Festival held in June, to sell alcohol at its events, was opposed to the idea.

“I’m not for this,” Marshall said. “I’m pretty sure everybody knows this. We have an ordinance (to not allow public consumption of alcohol) that should be enforced. The open containers ordinance should stand and abided by. I can’t see any good reason to approve this. If I was the police chief, I would be speaking out against this. It just doesn’t seem right. We are saying sometimes it is okay and sometimes it isn’t. I know it’s nice to have this, but I think it is really important not to approve this. We have gone, what, 36 years without it (at Applefest). I don’t see why we have to have it. I hope that the Mayor and other council members will tell me why it is important.”

Mayor Doug Baker challenged Marshall on his interpretation of the City ordinance about open containers.

“You are giving a mischaracterization of the ordinance,” Baker said. “There is a clause that permits the city manager to allow it. You make it sound like we would be violating the ordinance, which we aren’t. I don’t see a problem with it. I would recommend that we follow the recommendation of staff.”

Marshall then asked solicitor Brian Spaid for his interpretation of the ordinance, and Spaid agreed with Baker.

“It is accurate with what Mayor Baker says,” Spaid said. “That is what happened in the park (with the Blues Festival).”

Marshall then contended that Jamieson had told him she wasn’t in favor of the TrAils To Ales request, but Jamieson said her issue wasn’t with the selling of alcohol in the alleyway but rather with the precedent closing the alleyway might set.

“The closure of the alley is my problem more so than drinking,” Jamieson said. “But this alley doesn’t have the pedestrian traffic as others.”

As part of the city staff’s recommendation for closing the alleyway, Jamieson noted that if the city receives a lot of complaints about the alleyway being closed then the council would need to consider that wen approving any future closures.

Councilman Sam Lyons said he thought the garden would be “good for progress” and councilman Fred Mays reminded Marshall that it is “not illegal” to drink.

Spaid also noted that because the liquor permit TrAils To Ales would have to acquire to sell alcohol in the garden would only permit its consumption in the garden, he believed that the company would do a good job of making sure that happened.

“They would be facing a significant fine otherwise,” Spaid said.

When it came time to vote, all the council members and Baker voted to approve the closure except for Marshall and James Johnson, who didn’t speak for or against the proposal during the debate.

A fee to be charged to TrAils To Ales will be discussed at the Sept. 10 council meeting.

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