Utah's private drinking clubs now only a fading memory
Across the state of Utah liquor restrictions have eased slightly. Since July 1 it is no longer necessary to join clubs to drink alcohol. Although this might sound like a big overhaul to most people outside of Utah, locals know that in reality, not much has actually changed.
"Doesn't change anything, people don't have to pay $4 to get a drink anymore," said Tony Siaperas, owner of the Silver Dollar Bar in Price.
The change, which has been in the works for several years, has finally come to pass and was pushed through, by the state's multi-billion dollar a year tourism industry. "We're all happy about it, it lets us catch up with the rest of the country," said Siaperas.
Put in place to discourage minors from drinking, the law has been in place for about 40 years. And while most bar owners don't think it will change much, they do support it because it puts less of a stigma on the state from tourists who come for vacation.
Siaperas, who has been the owner of the Silver Dollar since 1992, believes that while business is slow at moment, it will eventually pick up, and although he acknowledges that Utah might have stricter liquor laws than else where, they are by no means the strictest. "We have people come in and say how the laws here are nothing compared to where they're from."
Although the law has changed, Utah still has some of the more aggressive liquor laws in the western United States. But for now it looks like most bar owners will just have to drop the work club from their signs.