Open for business: Local bars gain 52 additional days for revenue
POSTED: Sunday, November 4, 2012 - 2:00pm
UPDATED: Sunday, November 4, 2012 - 9:22pm
BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — The landscape of business on Sunday in Baton Rouge is seeing a bit of a change today. That’s because an ordinance passed by the Metro Council has relaxed the blue laws in the city-parish. Now, local bars have the option to open from 11:00 a.m. until midnight.
“I’m excited just to have the option,” Dave Remmetter, local bar owner, said. “It’s a big step for Baton Rouge, and I’m proud of the [Metro] Council for doing this.”
Prior to the passing of the ordinance, only restaurants were allowed to open on Sunday. However, some local bars that sell food were not allowed to open due to a required percentage of food to liquor sales.
“If you have a restaurant license, you are required to sell a certain percentage of food to maintain your license,” Robert Ross, part owner of Duvic’s Martini Lounge, said. “Although we sell food, we sell more alcohol, so we have a bar license.”
Until now, maintaining that bar license meant that Duvic’s had to remain closed on Sunday. Today, they plan to open at 6:00 p.m. and remain open until the required midnight closing time.
“Next week we’re going to open at 11:00 for brunch,” Ross added. “I think people are excited about it. They are going to have more options now.”
Excitement aside, most bar owners will admit that they have little idea of what to expect in regards to sales on Sunday.
“We now have an additional 52 days a year that we can generate revenue,” Dave Remmetter, co-owner of Radio Bar, said. “I don’t think it’s going to be our busiest day of the week, but even if it’s the same amount of sales we make on a Monday, that’s an option we didn’t have before.”
Many say the first few weeks are going to be a testing period to determine what will work.
“We haven’t really completely decided yet what we’re going to do,” Shane Courrege, co-owner of The Spanish Moon, admitted. “I don’t think we’re going to open every Sunday. But even if we don’t, I’m just excited we can.”