Residents and visitors to Utah who are fond of a drink or two just got some good news: There's no longer a need to be a member of a 'private club' to have a drink in a Utah bar.
For about 40 years, the Mormon view of alcohol - that is, don't have any... - has dominated the alcohol regulations in the state, meaning anyone who was thirsty for anything more than lemonade would have to:
- Find a private membership bar
- Fill out an application
- Pay a fee
Now, in reality that was a lot less taxing than it sounds, as you could just turn up, the bartender would ask if you were a member, and if not sign you up on the spot. Meaning your first drink would cost you about $16 instead of $4 for the bottle. Every venue required a separate membership, so tourists didn't do much bar hopping!
As Utah is a big tourist destination, and trying to be even more so with some of the world's best ski areas, this is great news for the state's tourism industry. It'll also be a welcome change during the Sundance film festival that takes place every January.
This follows on the relaxation of laws regarding homebrewed beer. Homebrewing was legalized back in March 2009.
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