A tale of wine and ale: Wimberley Players seek alcohol sales on premises

An ordinance passed by the Wimberley City Council earlier this month could open the door for the Wimberley Players theater group to permit alcohol sales at events and activities at the venue.

The reason for the ordinance was to bypass zoning restrictions the Players’ facility is located on. The zoning, Participant Recreation – High Impact (PR2) zoning restrictions, previously didn’t allow for alcohol sales on premises.

With the passage of the ordinance, the players will be able to apply with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) for a conditional permit. 

Council’s ordinance would allow limited duration alcohol sales on premises up to one hour before and after an event.

The ordinance also includes a provision that prohibits alcohol sales made by the Players at events to exceed 75 percent of its revenue.

“They reached out with interest in being able to sell beer and wine during intermissions and events and activities.” said Don Ferguson, Wimberley city administrator, as he presented the item to the council. “And right now, with the way they’re zoned, there’s not that opportunity for them to do that, unless they established a sit-down restaurant.”

Bisset said the Players have run primarily off of donations, fundraisers, memberships and gifts for over 37 years. It’s something that’s worked for the organization, as tickets sales from events provide a limited source of income.

“We’re a conservative organization when it comes to stretching the rules, but we’ve been asking the community to support us for 37 years.” Bisset said. “It’s a burden that we’ve been seeking to take away by bringing in concessions of beer and wine that would allow us to make a few extra dollars to help support us. Hopefully, it would attract adult patrons to come enjoy a show as well, knowing they can grab a beer.”

The Wimberley Players, however, have two large steps to climb toward possibly selling beer and wine.

The organization must apply for a conditional use permit (CUP) from the city to allow them to sell alcohol at events. The Players must acquire a license from TABC for the intended beer and wines sales.

“We have no control over their calendars, so we’ll have to leave this in the hands of the city and TABC to approve our applications. If we’re being optimistic, this is something we could see happening early next year, or spring.” said Bisset.

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