Food and wine at Bingham Park? Best if the fruit of the vine is not fermented. A proposed food and wine festival for the park in Hawley was discussed at Borough Council, Oct. 10, where several members expressed concern about alcohol. Attorney Anthony Waldron raised the proposal on behalf of the festival’s promoter John Henderson, a Hawley native who is now an Atlantic City event planner. Henderson would like to know if the concept would be considered, by the end of the year. The food and wine festival is proposed for next June, and will take some time to organize. The festival would occur mostly on Saturday and Sunday, and would require security and a gated access, Waldron said. He said he has read the deed governing the public park, but would need to review it before a presentation, possibly in November. Borough Solicitor Robert Bernathy stated that the ordinance affecting the park was amended in 1989. The ordinance prohibits drinking alcohol in public parks, street or parking lots, but alcohol may be dispensed by a group at an event if Council gives approval. That seemed far less than certain. “I worked hard to keep alcohol out of the park,” Council President Don Kyzer stated. Waldron stated that he also has mixed feelings, but the event could be good for the community if it was controlled properly. He said that the event would have to comply with the Liquor Control Board regulations. Councilman Joseph Faubel said that Henderson did bring this up at the Parks & Recreation Committee. “Most around the table thought it was a neat idea,” Faubel said, but added a lot of questions were raised since, with mixed feelings. “We need to consider the proximity to the playground,” he stated. Mary Sanders, Council Vice-president, added that a majority vote from Council will be needed once Parks & Recreation makes a recommendation. “I’m all for the food but negative on the wine,” she said.
Next, attorney Waldron brought another proposal to Council’s attention, about selling micro-brewery beer at the Mill Market in the Hawley Silk Mill. He said he is looking at the possibility of applying for a transfer of a liquor license from another community. The transfer would be pending Borough Council approval. He said the beer would only be sold in the store.