Entertainment

Proposed entertainment district in Bowling Green has mixed reactions

Written by corres2

WARREN COUNTY, Ky. — Bowling Green city leaders will soon vote on plans for a new entertainment district center. Some say it’ll bring more life into the downtown area, but it’s received mixed reactions.


What You Need To Know

  • Bowling Green is planning for an entertainment district downtown
  • If passed, patrons could purchase a beverage in a special cup and then take the drink outside within the boundary limits
  • The second reading of the ordinance will take place May 3 during the next commission meeting before going to Frankfort for final state approval
  • Currently, Owensboro, Newport, Covington and Paducah have entertainment districts

If all goes according to plan, visitors to downtown Bowling Green could soon be patrons of the city’s very first open container entertainment district.

Gerard’s 1907 Tavern bartender Megan Stetzer believes the idea will mean more money for businesses and more fun for customers

“I think it would be a good opportunity for the city it could bring in a lot of foot traffic in,” Stetzer said.

If passed, patrons could purchase a beverage in a special cup and then take the drink outside within the boundary limits.

The 24-year-old doesn’t oppose the ordinance, but hopes that people will follow the rules.

“It could be a really great thing, but again, it could also be one of those things that is not so great thing if it’s not regulated properly,” Stetzer suggested.

Earlier this week, Bowling Green city commissioners passed the first reading of the ordinance that would allow for an Entertainment Destination Center downtown, allowing the open carry of alcohol during certain hours.

Commissioner Sue Parrigin supports the measure.

She said the restaurant or bar that sold each drink inside the district on Fridays and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. will mark the cups.

“Let’s say you have a nice dinner at 440 Main and you want to go to the Derby Dessert Bar around the corner. You can actually take your glass of wine, beer, bourbon, or whatever is with you, from one event place to the other,” said Parrigin.

The goal is to make downtown more appealing and walkable to residents and tourists, according to Parrigin.

“The foot traffic means everything to our merchants and a thriving downtown is an indication of a thriving community,” Parrigin added.

David Meyer lives in Bowling Green and expects the ordinance, if passed, to be an incentive.

“I think the energy is going to result from events that bring a sense of community that allow the vendors or business owners to be able to reap the benefits and allow citizens to safely engage,” said Meyer.

The concept has worked well in neighboring communities, according to city officials. 

“It’s working across the state, it’s working in lots of other places and it’s creating vibes in their downtowns like they haven’t seen in decades and we want to get on that train and make that happen here,” Parrigin said.

The second reading of the ordinance will take place May 3 during the next commission meeting before going to Frankfort for final state approval.

Currently, Owensboro, Newport, Covington and Paducah have similar entertainment districts.

 



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