Could open containers soon be allowed downtown? - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Could open containers soon be allowed downtown?

Promenade Park could be included in an open container district. Promenade Park could be included in an open container district.
TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Ohio lawmakers are talking about letting cities like Toledo create "open container districts" where people could walk around in public with their alcoholic beverages.

Similar laws are already in place for cities like Las Vegas and New Orleans.

It could mean taking the party from inside the bars to the streets, and creating a livelier atmosphere. But it's what else the law could bring that has some people thinking twice.

Plenty of people enjoy Fifth Third Field, the Huntington Center, Seagate Center, and Promenade Park - those are some of the areas that could be included in an open-container/entertainment district.

"What's more fun than having the freedom to do what you want to do?" asked Toledo resident Dennis Brooks.

And local businesses say the plan could help bring people into the downtown area.

"You think of open container, you think of New Orleans, you think of Key West," said Table 44 Manager Robert Perry. "It would be cool to be classed in the same area as those cities."

But Perry and other managers say they would probably have to increase security, watch out more for underage drinkers, all while allowing people to have fun but be safe as they walk from place to place.

"Definitely have to have more police force," said Dave Keen, manager at Pizza Papalis. "Something around to control what might be going on."

It would be a way to connect the inside atmosphere to the outside, but some like resident Stan Griffin say, in addition to the Hens and Imagination Station, "You need something that's going to bring families down, not just partying and drinking."

Copyright 2013 Toledo News Now. All rights reserved.

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