CONYERS — The city of Conyers is focused on entertainment.
During its Feb. 20 meeting, the Conyers City Council approved an ordinance creating an entertainment district in Olde Town. Within the Entertainment District, patrons who purchase drinks from businesses within that district are permitted to carry them off premise within the district.
“I am very excited about this,” said Mayor Vince Evans. “This is something that is not cutting edge, and many, many communities are doing this.”
Evans said he and some other city officials recently met with the mayor and city manager of Gainesville, who said that their local restaurants have seen a significant increase in business since that town implemented a similar district.
According to the ordinance, the Conyers Entertainment District is bounded by South Main Street, Elm Street and Railroad Street.
The ordinance states that a specialty cup is required for consumption of alcoholic beverages off premises within the Entertainment District. The clear, plastic, 16-ounce cup will include a sticker provided by the city of Conyers that notes the dates of use. Specialty cups will only be issued between 5 p.m. and the close of business each day.
There are some restrictions, as well. Anyone consuming alcoholic beverages must be 21 years or older; one cannot leave the district with an alcoholic beverage; and one cannot get into a car with such a beverage.
Bringing your own bottle, or “brown bagging,” is not permitted. In other words, a person cannot bring an alcoholic beverage purchased from outside the Entertainment District and not in a specialty cup into the district.
What the new district does allow is a patron of one restaurant to leave with this specialty to-go cup and walk around the area and enter another establishment, provided that business owner allows it.
In an earlier article about the establishment of an entertainment district in Olde Town, Evans described it this way:
“If somebody is going to a play at the Black Box and they’re running behind schedule and have just ordered a drink, they can take it with them as they walk up the street to go into the play.
“If somebody is having dinner in one place and wants to walk down to the Celtic Tavern to listen to music, if they haven’t finished their drink, they can put it in an approved cup and walk to the Celtic,” he said. “It makes it a more relaxed atmosphere, and also, by having a zone like this, we might encourage more restaurants to become a part of this area that is a gathering place of sorts.”