Minnesota on Tap

Ryan Tuenge is an avid home brewer and craft beer lover who is not afraid to spend his last $5 on a pint of beer at the local pub. As a member of the Minnesota Home Brewers Association, Ryan has tried a wide variety of beers and has toured many of the local breweries. He also has a blog about craft beer in Minnesota. He likes to read, write and travel with his wife. Follow him on Twitter @lodgefather.

Are Sunday Sales in Minnesota a Possibility in 2014?

Posted by: Ryan Tuenge under Beer, Beer, Politics and government, Government Updated: March 16, 2014 - 10:57 PM

Ask just about anyone on the street here in the Twin Cities how they feel about Sunday Sales and, unless they own a liquor store or work for a distributor, they will likely say they support the selling of alcohol on Sunday. This, of course, is not true of all liquor store owners as it is estimated that at least 30 - 40% are in favor of a law change.

Daniel Mays of Stinson Wine Beer and Spirits is a big supporter of Sunday Sales and believes that his business will increase if the legislation were to pass. “We want the choice to be open because our customers want it and we believe we will do more business not just spread it out,” said Mays. “Between tourists who are flocking to the Twin Cities for the craft beer/craft distillery revolution, sporting and special events, last minute plans, and simply convenience we will sell more and the costs to us are negligible.”

Mays also points out that liquor stores “[A]re already paying rent and heating/cooling whether [they] are open or not,” and goes on to say that the, “[N]ew sales which will happen will off set labor easily and this is for a store that pays a living wage. We want the choice to be open and in Minnesota 2014 that just seems like common sense.”

Andy Schmitt, who runs Minnesota Beer Activists has been busy drumming up support for a bill that would make Sunday Sales legal in Minnesota for the first time since prohibition. He believes that legislation in support of this bill would bring more revenue and jobs to Minnesota. “If a bill like Sunday liquor sales that would undoubtedly bring money and jobs to Minnesota doesn't pass then Governor Dayton’s ‘unsession’ is the same as every other session,” said Schmitt.

You might wonder why, after 80 years, nothing allowing Sunday sales in Minnesota has passed. The answer is money from opposing lobbies, not just in our state, but also in North and South Dakota and Wisconsin. It makes sense that Wisconsin and the Dakotas don’t want Sunday Sales to be legalized here as it would take away valuable business from border stores in these states. So much so, that according to an unnamed source, their Sunday business “keeps the lights on, and the rest of the week is all profit.”

According to Schmitt, the time is now for people to act and to get involved. In fact, he explained that this week is crucial and if the hearing doesn’t happen this week, the issue could be dead for 2014. Supporters of Sunday Sales can go to sundaysalesmn.org to send emails to their representatives, but calling them is most effective. The direct link to find your Representatives is right here.

This is a current list of Minnesota establishments who support Sunday Sales:

Village Wine and Spirits in Lakeland

Fifth Street Liquor in Winona

Merwin Liquors in Falcon Heights

East 7th Liquor in St. Paul

Northbound Smokehouse Brewpub in Minneapolis

Chicago Lake Liquors in Minneapolis

Dinkytown Wine and Spirits in Minneapolis

Stinson Wine Beer and Spirits in Minneapolis

Dangerous Man Brewing in Minneapolis

North Loop Wine & Spirits in Minneapolis

Merwin Liquors in Minneapolis

Boom Island Brewing in Minneapolis

Shakopee Wine Cellars in Shakopee

Southbridge Liquor in Shakopee

Princess Liquor & Tobacco in St. Paul

Arbor Pointe Liquors in Inver Grove Heights

Booze Mart in West St. Paul

Diffley Square Liquors in Eagan

Old Vine Wine & Spirits in Bloomington

Pairings Food & Wine Market in Minnetonka

The Four Firkins in St. Louis Park

Steel Toe Brewing in St. Louis Park

Liquor Boy in St. Louis Park

Maddie’s Market in St. Paul

Merwin Liquors in Maplewood

Barley John’s Brewpub in New Brighton

Domacin Wine Shop in Stillwater

Hansen’s Liquor in Stillwater

On the Rocks Wines & Spirits in Hugo

Haye’s Public House in Buffalo

JT’s Corner Bar and Grill Liquor Store in Houston

Day Block Brewing in Minneapolis

La Crescent Wine & Spirits in La Crescent

Bissen’s Tavern in Brownsville

Fetketter Family Bar and Grill in Eitzen

Don’t Remember in Harmony

Shellhorn Roadhouse in Brownsville

Peterson Off Sale in Peterson

Southside Corner in La Crescent

3rd Street Liquor in Winona

Golfview Liquor Store in Winona

Kato Liquor Ltd in Winona

Bergies Bar and Grill Liquor Store in Houston

J & B’s Liquor Store in La Roy

Kinney Creek Brewery in Rochester

Hometown Wine & Spirits in Wanamingo

Wenonah Brewing Co. in Goodview

Red Wing Brewery in Red Wing

Jack Pine Brewery in Baxter

Sawmill Saloon Liquor Store in Virginia

Leech Lake Brewing Company in Walker

99 Bottles in Moorhead

Bridgeview Liquors in Moorhead

Boathouse Brewpub in Ely

Rock Bottom Brewery in Minneapolis

Cheers!

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