Cook Inlet CHARR pushes for expanded alcohol serving hours
A local organization representing the hospitality industry in Anchorage is pushing for expanded hours for bars and restaurants to be able to serve alcohol. The Cook Inlet Cabaret Hotel Restaurant and Retailers Association (CHARR) is encouraging residents to let their Anchorage Assembly members know if they wish to allow restaurants and bars to start serving alcohol at 8 a.m. instead of 10 a.m.
At the Peanut Farm, football fans turned out to watch their games Sunday -- which often start before 10 a.m. in Alaska.
"I was unaware of the laws," said Michael Golec, in town visiting from Albany, New York.
Golec ordered a drink before 10 a.m. and was told he'd have to wait before he could be served.
"Especially with the NFL Games starting at 9 a.m. here, it would be a little bit better if the bars could start serving at that time, maybe bring in a little bit more business to them," said Golec.
"On Sunday, that'd be a great thing," said Kurt Homme, whose weekend visits to the Peanut Farm are a ritual during football season.
"I think that would be a good thing for the restaurant owners to allow them to make a little revenue on the weekend," said Homme.
Several patrons were in favor of the change. Anchorage resident Tiffany Conger pointed out more lenient alcohol regulations in the Mat-Su Valley.
"You want to have your bloody Mary right when you come in so I don't see that's gonna be a huge issue," she said.
In flyers posted around town, CHARR advocates for the change, saying:
"This provides you the opportunity to enjoy a beer with your football game in the morning, a drink before a morning flight at the airport, or the ability for night-shift workers to have an after-work beverage with friends."
But some feel in a state with high alcohol addiction rates, the change isn't a good idea.
"10 a.m. is fine. I think 8 a.m. is probably for the ones that have struggled through the night and maybe need a fix in the morning, and that's never a good direction to head that early in the day," said J.J. Iverson, adding, "I don't think we need to encourage people to get up any earlier to get into the saloon to start puttin' em down."
Mike Senko told KTVA he's also against the change, saying he doesn't drink because he's a Christian and enjoys the early alcohol-free environment at Peanut Farm before church on Sundays.
"I really enjoy seeing the families with their kids sitting around. Like right now, you don't see any kids in this place," said Senko, gesturing to the bar scene around 1 p.m. "If you come here early in the morning, you see a lot of moms and dads with their kids and babies, they're coming in here to watch a little football and the environment is totally different."
KTVA reached out to CHARR to speak about the effort but did not hear back Sunday. The organization's website says, "We are collecting postcards with the signature's of assembly member's constituents to show support! To get cards & posters for your business, call 907-602-1340!"
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