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HomeNewsMiami Beach to restrict booze sales ahead of expected spring break chaos

Miami Beach to restrict booze sales ahead of expected spring break chaos


Officials in Miami Beach voted this week to restrict alcohol sales in March, as the city hopes to stave off the spring break calamity that overwhelmed the seaside paradise in 2021.

“During March — on either side of St. Patrick’s Day, at the high point at spring break — the disorder in our city is intolerable. It’s just that simple,” said Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber, according to CNN.

The new resolution shuts off on-premise booze sales at 2 a.m. from March 7 to March 21, in the raucous entertainment district of South Beach. The typical time for last call is 5 a.m.

The ruling will “ensure a safe environment as we protect the quality of life of our residents in a temporary ordinance,” said city commissioner Alex Fernandez.

Many local business owners were incensed by the vote.

Spring breakers grew rowdy in South Beach, Florida last year as other cities enforced COVID-19 restrictions.
Spring breakers grew rowdy in Miami Beach, Florida last year as other cities enforced COVID-19 restrictions.
AFP via Getty Images
Bar, general view at Mango Tropical Cafe in South Beach.
Local bar owners called the alcohol sales ban unfair because tourists can easily travel outside of Miami Beach.
LightRocket via Getty Images
Spring breakers crowd Ocean Drive in South Beach, Florida on March 22, 2019.
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber says the alcohol sales restriction will prevent disorder during spring break.
AFP via Getty Images

“It’s just picking winners and losers. It’s wrong,” said Jimmy Resnick, the landlord for South Beach club Exchange Miami, which sits on the edge of the restricted zone south of 16th Street.

“You walk approximately a block and a half and you’re at Mr. Jones — they get to open until 5 o’clock … it’s ludicrous,” he said. “I think that you do it citywide, or you don’t do it at all.”

The situation in Miami Beach grew so outrageous last year that the city enacted an 8 p.m. curfew and declared a state of emergency.

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