Maplewoodstock Will Have Beer Garden Again this Year

by The Village Green
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The Maplewood Township Committee agreed in a 3-2 vote Tuesday night to permit the Maplewoodstock music festival to have a Beer Garden in 2015.

The festival, which will run July 11 and 12, 2015, is in its 12th year, according to organizer Jim Robertson, who appeared before the TC Tuesday night with co-organizers Kevin Chandler and Jamie Ross to request permission for the Beer Garden.

Offered since 2012, the Beer Garden sells local beer and a limited selection of wine. Entry requires proof of age (21+) and all alcohol must stay within the garden. It operates from 2 p.m. until a half hour before the show’s end, said Robertson.

Before the vote, Mayor Vic DeLuca asked if any problems had arisen from the Beer Garden last year. Robertson said no, that the garden was placed at the top of the hill at Memorial Park far from the children’s activities, was fenced in and patrolled by a police offer — the cost of which Maplewoodstock covers.

That still didn’t satisfy two members of the Township Committee, Marlon K. Brownlee and India Larrier, each of whom voted against the proposal as they have in the past.

“I continue to say it’s not appropriate” to sell alcohol “at a family friendly event,” said Brownlee. He also pointed out that the organizers’ original rationale for the beer garden was that it would provide extra revenue to enable them to hire better acts. But so far, he said, the beer garden has not made money, so “to me that rationale falls pale.”

Larrier concurred that alcohol isn’t appropriate at Maplewoodstock, pointing out that if people bring their own alcohol to the event, “it’s illegal.”

Township Committeeman Jerry Ryan said he was reluctant to approve the beer garden the first year, but “It’s turned out to not be a problem.”


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