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Sunday, July 8, 2007

Washington: A State Full of Sinners

posted by on July 8 at 12:00 PM

Bloody heathens:

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Sunday liquor sales will get a boost when 29 more stores open their doors on Sundays starting July 15.

Lawmakers this year approved the increase in stores after an initial expansion proved to be popular.

Two years ago, the state approved a pilot project to allow 20 state-run stores plus contract stores run by private vendors to open between noon and 5 p.m. on Sundays. The pilot program returned $7.5 million in revenue for state and local programs.

The total number of state stores open on Sunday will now be 49.

The state has 161 state-run stores and 158 contract stores run by the private sector, typically in rural areas.

Seattle will have THREE liquor stores open from 12-5 on Sundays, located at 515 1st Ave. N., 1605 12th Ave and 2746 NE 45th.

If God had intended for us to make Margaritas on Sundays, it would say so in the Bible.

I’m moving to Utah.

Via AP

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Why are liquor laws in Washington State so provincial? Oregon is about the same. Prohibition ended in the 1933. It's as if alcohol is still this BIG EVIL that needs to be tamed.

There's not a lot than can be said for California, but it sure is convenient (and adult) to be able to run into a Rite Aid for shampoo, toothpaste, and a bottle of gin. And you can get liquor deals at Costco in California, too.

And why did they never make people drive to Kingdom Come for a pack of cigarettes?

I don't drink and I don't smoke. I just hate seeing laws still on the books that have long since served their supposed purposes.

Posted by Bauhaus | July 8, 2007 12:27 PM

The same can be said about the nightlife regs here in Seattle. And they might get even worse, and even more ridiculous.

Nightclubs. Dens of Vice!

Posted by It's Mark Mitchell | July 8, 2007 12:33 PM

They need to start selling it in grocery stores, and get rid of that nannyish 2AM last call.

Posted by Tiffany | July 8, 2007 12:34 PM

Damn right. I hate having to go to a special store with weird hours to buy liqueur. But I would settle if the store closet to my house 23rd and Union was open on Sundays.

Posted by Giffy | July 8, 2007 12:59 PM

Screw Utah, Jonah, move to South Carolina! Not only are the liquor stores closed on Sundays, but I can't even order a damn beer in a restaurant in my county. For good measure, nothing opens before 1:30 in the afternoon, either.

Posted by Darcy | July 8, 2007 1:17 PM

I wish the liquor store near Stone Way was open on Sunday. I need a Bloody Mary and I'm all out of vodka.

Posted by elswinger | July 8, 2007 1:21 PM

@5 - At least they got rid of that ridiculous mini-bottle law! I've seen a lot of stupid in my life, but the year I was stationed in Charleston had the highest concentration of stupid I hope to ever see.

Posted by LT L | July 8, 2007 1:28 PM

"Two years ago, the state approved a pilot project to allow 20 state-run stores plus contract stores run by private vendors to open between noon and 5 p.m. on Sundays. The pilot program returned $7.5 million in revenue for state and local programs."

They needed a pilot program to prove that they would make more money? Hmmm. Also, the 2 am law is sad, if for no other reason, because it turns our streets into ghost towns between 3 and 5 AM. I'd feel much safer being outside at those times if there were establishments open and with people keeping eyes on the streets.

Posted by Cale | July 8, 2007 1:55 PM

@7: I know the bartenders like freepour a lot better, and bars probably spend less on alcohol overall with the larger bottle. There were upsides to the mini-bottle law, though, at least for bar patrons. Unless they split the mini-bottle between two drinks, you got a stronger drink that way than with freepour.

Posted by Darcy | July 8, 2007 2:46 PM

@8, not to mention that it unloads all the drunks at the same time. Never drive from 2-3am.

Posted by Giffy | July 8, 2007 3:50 PM


You can blame our draconian, puritanical liquor laws in large part on the traditionally very powerful state restaurant lobby, which, when Prohibition was overturned saw an opportunity to essentially monopolize the liquor-by-the-drink business.

It was only - what? ten years ago or less? - that establishments that didn't receive a certain percentage of their income from food sales were even allowed to sell hard licks, hence the predominance of beer/wine taverns in this state, and until fairly recently, the complete absense of "cocktail lounges".

Posted by COMTE | July 8, 2007 5:25 PM

Be glad you guys don't live in Canada or the UK.

Posted by matthew fisher wilder | July 8, 2007 6:24 PM

Besides Vegas where in the USA are bars open 24/7?

Posted by elswinger | July 8, 2007 7:52 PM

They don't have to be open 24 hours, but 2AM is way too early. In New York, they sell alcohol until at least 4AM.

Posted by Tiffany | July 8, 2007 8:04 PM

Washington state has always had a love/hate relationship with booze.

Back in the territorial days (oh, stop rolling your eyes - I won't take that long) Seattle persevered as a town, despite the best efforts of the Northern Pacific, who simply HATED us, mostly because we had booze and we had hookers, and we didn't care (as opposed to Tacoma, who tried to be all nicey-nicey and suck-up-to-the-railroad, and look what happened there)

Later, however, we got all embarrassed and wanted to hide all those hookers (who weren't aging well) and dirty old men (who, by definition, don't age well), so we passed prohibition before anybody else did. While we were at it, we passed a law saying you couldn't spit. (It was a dreadful time for phlemmy drunks).

When FDR (or, THAT MAN as all the prigs called him) was elected, he thought everyone should be able to drink again, it being the depression and all, so they repealed prohibition, and you can be sure that there was a lot of celebrating in the bars and hotels, who had resorted to having ice cream parlors and tearooms where their bars used to be.

But we still had this thing about the liquor, mostly because of the Washington State Liquor Control Board, which always had a bunch of ministers and club women who couldn't admit to liking a snort now and then. And after a while, like a state agencies, it kind of became one of those things you can't get rid of. Then it became one of those things that's downright annoying with all sorts of dumb rules about not drinking while standing up, and no single women at a bar.

Me, I'm all for closing the liquor stores and letting the grocery stores sell the booze. To make my fellow union brothers happy, I would require that only the chains with collective bargaining could get licenses. But that's the kind of reasonable guy I am.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | July 8, 2007 9:08 PM

When I first moved here, (1967) when out at a tavern, (bars were not at all prevalent, mostly in hotels and attached to restaurants), you were not allowed to pick up your drink and walk around the room. A waitperson had to move it for you to your new table of choice. You also could not stand up while drinking. Best of all, last call on a Saturday night was 11:45 pm Friday!

On a similar note of provinciality, you could not purchase any fresh meat on Sunday. Fresh meat had to be sold when a butcher was on duty, and they did not work Sundays.

It was a long process to have these and other similar but equally stupid speedbumps removed from our road to 'World Class", so hang in there folks.

By the time you are too old to give a shit, current nanny laws will have been replaced by equally stupid restrictions.

Posted by old timer | July 9, 2007 7:09 AM

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