Palm Beach Zoo expected to sell beer, wine after city of West Palm Beach changes ordinance

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- The sale of beer or wine at the Palm Beach Zoo is on the horizon.

On Monday, city commissioners are expected to change an ordinance that restricts the sale of alcohol within 500 feet of a church, neighborhood or school.

The Palm Beach Zoo is one of the few zoos in Florida that does not have a liquor license, Andrew Aiken, its president and CEO said.

"It's a really exciting experience," Aiken said. "If it's a Friday evening and you happen to have a glass of wine in your hand, you know, it's even more fun."
 
A change in the ordinance would let the zoo sell beer or wine during special events, during weekdays and during weekends.
 
"From their perspective, they believe that it is to their advantage to be able to serve alcohol at the functions that they have," Elliot Cohen, a City of West Palm Beach spokesperson said. "It gives them the ability to put on a different caliber of either fundraiser or activities there."
 
Paul Davis, a Hobe Sound resident who grew up near the zoo, said he supported the idea.
 
"You don't think about it, you know, having a beer here. It's usually somewhere else," Davis said. "If they sold a beer, I'd have one," said Davis.
 
After city commissioners vote to change the ordinance -- and, there are strong indications they will -- Aiken said the zoo will be apply to the Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco for a license to sell alcohol.
 
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