Picnickers at Nine County Parks to be Allowed Alcoholic Drinks

Picnickers in nine county parks will be able to enjoy alcoholic drinks with their meals beginning on Thursday, Sept. 24.

The action is a pilot program that will run through May 31, 2021 as part of the Picnic in the Park initiative launched in August.

Picnic in the Park allows park visitors to easily find nearby restaurants offering takeout and delivery.

Each park has signs with a QR code that visitors can scan to be connected to the MoCo Eats website, a Visit Montgomery online restaurant directory with more than 800 listings.

The site allows park visitors to connect and order directly from a nearby restaurant. Each park has a designated delivery area where picnickers can meet a driver and pick up their order.

Restaurants with the proper liquor licenses also are allowed to deliver alcoholic drinks during the pandemic (though not via third-party delivery services).

“Many of our local businesses and restaurants are struggling now as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. This initiative is one way the parks department and the public can help,” said Mike Riley, director of Montgomery Parks, in a press release.

Locally, the participating parks are Jesup Blair Local Park (900 Jesup Blair Dr.), Acorn Urban Park (8060 Newell St.) and Takoma Urban Park (7035 Carroll Ave.).

The alcohol pilot program allows picnickers to consume beer, wine or mixed drinks in designated parks from 11 a.m. to dusk. Patrons must observe social distancing by using either picnic circles or the picnic tables spaced six feet apart at the pilot park locations.

Park Police will continue to enforce county health guidelines to prevent large gatherings, as well as patrol to ensure all state and county laws, along with park rules and regulations, are followed.

Photo from Cory Van Horn (Visit Montgomery)

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