Special events drinking bill passes the House

TOPEKA – The House voted 110-13 for a bill that allows alcohol to be served at special events like Final Friday.

House Bill 2180 allows cities to issue temporary special permits for events that can then serve drinks such as wine, strong beer or mixed drinks. Currently, events such as the River Festival can have outdoor beer gardens serving 3.2 beer in a confined area.

Wichita has pushed the bill as a way to enhance the quality of life in the city and to attract more young people to build lives in the city.

Alcohol at special events and direct wine shipments pass the Senate

Wandering through Final Fridays with a glass of wine just moved a step closer to reality.

Wednesday, the Senate passed Senate Bill 213 on a vote of 37-3. Republican Senators Dennis Pyle, of Hiawatha, Roger Reitz, of Manhattan, and Dick Kelsey of Goddard voted against the measure.

The proposal allows communities to permit alcoholic beverages to be served within special event areas such as Final Friday or River Festival.

Currently, events can have beer gardens serving 3.2 beer, but the bill would expand the area to the entire event and increase the beverage options.

The chamber also approved SB 212 on a 39-1 vote. The bill allows Kansans to receive up to 12 cases of wine annually from out-of-state wineries. Currently, wine shipments must be sent to a liquor store.

Both bills now go to the House for debate.