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Kennywood beer sales restricted during school picnic season

Cindy Shegan Keeley | Daily News
Kennywood amusement park in West Mifflin has added barbecued foods to its list of concessions. The stand is accessible through the park's beer garden.

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Saturday, June 15, 2013, 1:46 a.m.
 

The saying “never, ever on a Sunday” doesn't apply where beer sales at Kennywood are concerned.

In fact, right now the only time patrons of the West Mifflin amusement park can get a beer is on Sunday and it is expected to stay that way until after June 26, the date of the last school picnic.

Kennywood took steps last year to transfer a liquor license it owned from another restaurant so it could sell beer at a designated “beer garden” in the park.

The move sparked public debate that alcohol sales could damage the park's family friendly atmosphere. Last year, much of the summer had passed before the park was granted a conditional licensing agreement after reaching accord with some of the plan's critics. The park only sold beer for two weekends following Labor Day in September.

Park spokesman Jeff Filicko said one of the concerns alcohol opponents had last year was that beer would be sold during school picnic season. “It's an easy concern to address,” he said. “It's less for schools to worry about.”

Filicko said the beer garden will be open “more consistently” after June 26, but added the park will retain the option of keeping the garden closed on certain days if warranted by factors such as weather or park activity.

The first day the park sold beer this year was May 19.

Filicko said beer selection, pricing, and identification and sales procedures all remain unchanged from last season.

The layout of the beer garden has been adjusted somewhat to accommodate a new barbecue concession.

The park tested barbecue sales last year and found they were popular, Filicko said, noting there is a designated patio area where grilled products such as chicken, ribs and corn on the cob are offered. Those menu items are available both in and out of the beer garden area, he said.

Filicko said beer sales end daily approximately two hours before the park closes.

Eric Slagle is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1966, or eslagle@tribweb.com.

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