“Midget Madness” at the Brewhouse Music & Grill is a go.
Rome’s Alcohol Control Commission agreed Monday night to the request by owner Eric McJunkin – who wants to have a little person strolling his bar top, pouring alcohol shots from a bottle into patrons’ open mouths.
“I don’t like the idea, but I don’t like the idea of not approving it,” said ACC Chair Monica Sheppard.
Members Collin Doss, John Kendrick and Harold Morgan reluctantly agreed. Member Steve Van Meter, who was transferred in June to a job in Marietta, was not present.
McJunkin was out of town but asked City Clerk Joe Smith to present his application for an entertainment license at the 325 Broad St. bar. Smith showed a short YouTube video titled ”Midget Madness at Caseys Pittsburgh!!” to demonstrate the idea in action.
“It’s not typical entertainment; more of a drinking event ... He’s looking for a way to market his business,” Smith said.
Doss said it appears exploitative, but added that an adult little person’s decision to be exploited for pay is beyond the ACC’s purview. Kendrick questioned if a license is even necessary for the unusual method of serving drinks.
“I applaud him for asking (instead of just doing it),” he said.
Smith noted that the city does not regulate the size or type of alcoholic beverages offered in a venue with a valid license. “Or who’s serving them,” Sheppard added.
It was unclear Monday when McJunkin would add the feature to his downtown pub.
In other actions, the ACC approved a beer license for Nelson Yanes at Don Neo’s Tacos and Elotes, 330 Broad St. Yanes said he would be putting a selection of canned and bottled beers on his menu.
The ACC also sent forward to the Rome City Commission a recommendation to put a vote on the “brunch bill” on the Nov. 5 general election ballot.
If approved, restaurants with pouring permits would be able to serve alcoholic drinks as early as 11 a.m. on Sundays. The current start-time is 12:30 p.m. The vote would not affect package sales.
Smith said the City Commission would hold a first reading of the proposed ordinance at its Monday meeting. A second reading and adoption – clearing the way for the ballot question – is scheduled for Sept. 9.
The Georgia General Assembly passed a law in 2018 that allows communities to decide for themselves if they’ll allow alcohol to be served with brunch.
Rome commissioners were preparing for a vote last year but discovered they’d have to pay for a separate election. The board opted to defer action until this year, when city elections are already scheduled.