Committee approves liquor for Northrop

Concert-goers at Northrop Auditorium will be able to enjoy a beer between sets in a few months thanks to legislation passed Thursday.
A conference committee passed the omnibus liquor bill, allowing for Northrop’s liquor license, after little debate. The bill will be approved by the full House and Senate today or Saturday, said Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Eden Prairie. If signed by Gov. Jesse Ventura, the license will allow Northrop to sell wine, hard liquor and 3.2 beer.
“It was a ten-minute meeting,” Paulsen said.
The license has been held up in the past because alcohol is restricted within one-tenth of a mile of the University. Northrop first requested a liquor license 20 years ago.
The bill passed the House on March 30 and the Senate in April. It will now be sent to Ventura for his signature.
“Almost every other place that you go for a concert in the area, if you’re 21, you can get a glass of wine or a beer at intermission,” said Dale Schatzlein, Northrop Auditorium director. “This is putting us on a level playing field.”
Schatzlein said the sales will not begin for a few more months because there are other legal matters they need to deal with before it can happen.
In addition to the Northrop license, legislators agreed to allow Macalester College to distribute liquor during their Scottish Fair, at the Twin Cities Marathon finish line, as well as at the Fitzgerald Theatre.
The marathon ends on state Capitol grounds, where alcohol is not permitted, and the Fitzgerald Theatre is surrounded by churches, pitting liquor sales against local restrictions.
— Erin Ghere