The Enterprise City Council passed an ordinance establishing an entertainment district in the city’s downtown area at its Tuesday evening meeting.
The entertainment district designation means that customers are allowed to take an open container of alcohol outside of an establishment as long as they stay inside the limits of the district. To leave a licensed premise within the district with an alcoholic beverage, the drink must be in a shatter-proof container. The ordinance also prevents anyone from entering a licensed premise with any alcoholic beverages obtained from somewhere else.
The entertainment district will include an area of one-half mile by one-half mile downtown and will be in effect during the hours of 11 a.m. until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays and from 5 p.m. until 11 p.m. on other days of the week. The district will not be in effect on Sundays.
Earlier this year, the nearby cities of Ozark and Headland both created entertainment districts.
During an address to the council, Enterprise Chamber of Commerce Director Erin Grantham said that the creation of the entertainment district will benefit the established businesses downtown and attract new ones to the area.
“When we have events downtown and we set a beer barrel outside in the street, it’s confusing to the patrons when they walk into a business and buy a beverage but they can’t walk out,” Grantham said. “It’s very confusing. And more importantly, I don’t feel good about having a beer barrel out in the road that takes away business from our businesses that are already established… Obviously we’re going to have to be responsible and give the education out about what the entertainment district is, what the rules are, etcetera… I just want to make sure that everybody understands that this is an effort to help our current businesses and to also help recruit businesses as well as lifting up the tax revenue.”
In his report, Mayor William Cooper thanked the council for passing the entertainment district ordinance and said it is a move in the right direction.
“I think this is really going to be an asset to our city and means that we will be moving in the right direction and liven up our downtown area, as well as moving in the direction that other cities are going,” Cooper said.
Councilwoman Sonya Rich also voiced her excitement about the passing of the ordinance.
“I’m excited about the entertainment district,” Rich said. “I think it’s time. A lot of the places we go, they’re there already, so this just another move to help grow Enterprise.”