The times are a changing in small towns all over Kentucky. The southeastern part of the state, long a redoubt of bootleggers and Baptist ministers and not coincidentally, historically dry-is rapidly becoming "moist" as in alcohol is allowed for sale by the glass in restaurants.
Little municipalities like Corbin and London are seeing an influx of chain restaurants like Applebees that formerly would have never considered opening because this revenue stream was closed to them.
Now Boone Tavern, a Roadfood favorite at 103 years old is considering alcohol sales. Good piece in the morning paper out of Lexington on the issue.
It seems silly for this to be a big deal but in Kentucky this is a white hot issue. Read the piece here http://www.kentucky.com/2...l-creates-dilemma.html
It'll be a shocker if the Berea College board votes for alcohol sales. The law that passed was a bad law because Boone Tavern is the only place in Berea that meets the requirements. If the referendum had been city-wide, I doubt that it would have passed. With a population of about 14,000, the vote was something like 146-57 in favor of alcohol sales.
Most of the people I've talked to here in town, aren't really very interested in the prospect of alcohol sales at Boone Tavern because not many people much care about Boone Tavern as a place to eat. It's not that they're against Boone Tavern serving alcohol, it's just that they don't much care one way or the other. It's not nearly as good as it once was when the college actually operated it. I bet the typical Berean probably eats at Boone Tavern less than once every year or two.
Berea is a great place to live, but it's a little disappointing that we don't really have many good places to eat and I don't think it's because of the lack of alcohol sales. Berea is both a stop-over and a destination town, but there's really no gotta-go-to restaurants in town. In the eleven years we've lived here, there have been at least fifteen restaurants open up and then close within about three years.
For most of us, if we want to have dinner with a drink, it's not much of an effort to drive ten minutes north to Richmond. It doesn't take us much longer to get to multiple restaurants in Richmond than it does to get to the Berea Walmart.
Imo, when they built the Artisan Center at Exit 77 on I-75, it hurt the town, as far as tourism is concerned. People get off the interstate to go to the Artisan Center, but don't actually make it into town. You can go to Old Town or the area around the town square on most weekends and the streets are full of empty parking spaces.
I think the people who may take advantage if Boone Tavern ends up serving alcohol will be those who live in the northern part of Jackson County because it will be closer than Richmond to the north or London to the southwest of them.