Sumter City Council OKs alcohol sales at new downtown Inspire Festival

BY KAYLA ROBINS
kayla@theitem.com
Posted 3/7/19

Beer and wine sales were approved for a new, upcoming downtown festival honoring the legacy of the late Roger Ackerman at a Sumter City Council meeting on Tuesday, where members also got a presentation from the Red Cross honoring the Sumter Fire …

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Sumter City Council OKs alcohol sales at new downtown Inspire Festival

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Beer and wine sales were approved for a new, upcoming downtown festival honoring the legacy of the late Roger Ackerman at a Sumter City Council meeting on Tuesday, where members also got a presentation from the Red Cross honoring the Sumter Fire Department for its smoke alarm installation campaign.

New downtown festival approved for alcohol sales

Agenda item: Shelley Kile, City of Sumter communications and tourism director, asked to amend a resolution that authorizes the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages at designated events in Sumter in 2019 to add a new, upcoming festival to the list.

Background: The city recently approved a resolution to allow for beer and wine to be sold, bought and consumed at various festivals that take place in the city. When the annual resolution was approved on Feb. 19 for events in 2019, a new event called the Inspire Festival had not yet been organized and requested for alcohol sale and consumption.

Other events already approved in the Feb. 19 resolution are last weekend's Untapped: Food Truck and Craft Beer Festival, Fourth Fridays on Main Concert Series, Derby Day, Microbrew Festival, Iris Festival, Fall Feast, Oktoberfest, Porches of Sumter, Sumter Downtown Market, Zombie Fest Halloween and Sip and Stroll.

Kile said the Inspire Festival will be a fundraising effort to support food, the arts and music, focusing mostly on events already happening April 4-7.

Discussion: The Ackerman Legacy Foundation, a newly formed organization that is spearheading the festival in memory of the late Roger Ackerman, a philanthropist and supporter of the arts in Sumter who passed away last year, wants to sell beer and wine on Saturday, April 6, during a Dinner on Main event that will block off Main Street between Hampton Avenue and Liberty Street.

Alcoholic beverages will be permitted only in containers provided by vendors within designated areas, and no pets, coolers, glass bottles or breakable glasses or cups will be allowed at the event, according to the resolution.

Vote: 4-1 - Councilman Calvin Hastie voted against the resolution, saying he continues to oppose the sale of alcohol at city-sponsored events.