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stickman
10-21-2003, 10:40 PM
The following was a front page article from our local newspaper tonight:

"Utemark: Too many bars downtown


By Jamie Willey

Parsons Sun

A Parsons business owner complained to the Parsons City Commission Monday evening about the number of drinking establishments downtown.

Robin Utemark, owner of The Consignment Shop, 1814 Broadway, asked the commission if it could prevent any more bars from opening up downtown because it presents a "bad image" for the city. She wanted to know if the city could control the amount of bars through the issuance of liquor licenses.

City Attorney Richard Dearth explained that the city is in charge of only cereal malt beverage licenses, which allows a bar to sell beer with an alcohol content less than 3.2 percent. Those licenses must be given to anyone who qualifies. The state issues liquor licenses, Dearth said.

Dearth said the only control the city has over the location of bars is through zoning. Currently, the downtown area is zoned to allow businesses such as retail shops as well as bars and restaurants that sell alcohol.

Utemark said she's invested a lot of money in locating her business downtown with the thought that it would flourish under the renovation project. She doesn't think that will happen with more bars located there.

"If Parsons allows any more bars to go in, downtown will be deserted during the day. Everyone will make a beeline to Wal-Mart," Utemark said.

She said she didn't mind the restaurants that sell alcohol, but she doesn't like having businesses such as the two pool halls downtown that rely on alcohol alone to make a profit. Those types of businesses will not do well to attract quality tenants in the apartments downtown the city wants to see renovated after many years of sitting empty, she said.

She said she has an apartment at the back of her business from which a person can already hear the noise coming from Leroy Brown's.

Trash is another issue, she said, because there is often a lot of trash that other business owners have to pick up on weekend mornings near the two pool halls.

Commissioner Bob Bartelli said the city is caught in a "Catch-22" because it wants to see a lively downtown with entertainment options but could do without the late-night partying.

Commissioner Lewis Smith said he's seen minors late at night in the pool halls and said there has been at least one shooting in town that was caused by a dispute that originated downtown.

"There's trouble brewing in downtown Parsons late at night," Lewis said.

Dearth suggested that if Utemark wanted to effect a change in the future of downtown Parsons, she should meet with the Parsons Planning Commission, the origin of zoning changes for the city."

I submitted the following letter to the editor, and hope it gets printed:

Too many consignment shops downtown

I think the City Commission should adopt a ban on consignment shops in the downtown business area. They give the downtown district a cheap rummage sale image. Rummage sales should be confined to garages on weekends, with signs all over the place telling how to get there. (It hurts when someone criticizes the business you operate for a living, doesn't it?)

One local consignment shop owner recently complained to the City Commission about there being too many drinking establishments in the downtown area. She especailly indicated that she disliked the two downtown pool halls. I happen to be a regular patron of one of these businesses, and know the owner well. Maybe she should meet him. He is a very nice, likable young man. Like her, he also has a considerable investment in his business. Not everyone who goes into these places drinks, or is out looking for trouble. In fact, I have yet to see any trouble at the one I frequent. The place is clean, well managed, and if you're hungry, it's a great place to get a good home-cooked meal away from home.

Ms. Utemark could always move to Pleasantville.

Signed, addressed, etc.

Maybe a little strong, but this was how I felt after reading this article. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Scott Lee
10-22-2003, 04:45 AM
Way to go Jim! Good for you! That woman obviously knows NOTHING about pool, and couldn't care less. Perhaps she would like to ban the table in the local YMCA too?

Scott

stickman
10-22-2003, 04:58 AM
The new pool hall is newly remodeled inside and out, and looks really nice. It presents a much better image than her rundown, neglected store front. She runs a used clothing store, and the inside looks as bad as the outside. I suspect she is waiting for a downtown renovation project to come along and refurbish her store for her at taxpayer expense.

Don't knock my pool hall. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Wally_in_Cincy
10-22-2003, 07:01 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote stickman:</font><hr>

....."If Parsons allows any more bars to go in, downtown will be deserted during the day. Everyone will make a beeline to Wal-Mart," Utemark said.....

<font color="blue">I'm getting this image of Jimmy Stewart coming back to Potterville with Clarence the angel and all the bars and whores and all hell breaking loose /ccboard/images/graemlins/laugh.gif /ccboard/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

Nowadays we call that an "entertainment district" /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif </font color>


"There's trouble brewing in downtown Parsons late at night," Lewis said.

<font color="blue">Trouble. Right here in River City LOL </font color>

.....Too many consignment shops downtown

I think the City Commission should adopt a ban on consignment shops in the downtown business area. They give the downtown district a cheap rummage sale image.

<font color="blue">Stick, this is a stroke of genius. I love it. </font color>
<hr /></blockquote>

Rod
10-23-2003, 12:37 AM
Good for you Jim, voice your opinion. Strange enough, last night I just saw part of that movie, Pleasantville!

About the bars, and or pool rooms. She wants to know if there is any way to prevent such? Well as I see this it could be a concern but it's not likely to grow. After all how many places can survive in Parsons? All she wants to do is bitch, fine let her do that. I hope the owner, and you if needed explain to the patrons to keep everything clean. Don't give the people a reason to doubt it is anything but a well managed business. I know that is not your responsibility, just giving a little input.

Rod