Alcohol prohibition remains in Red Deer parks (Advocate file photo).

Red Deer officials will allow Calgary to trial alcohol in parks

The result could determine if local rules are relaxed

Relaxing rules around drinking alcohol in Red Deer parks could depend on how things play out in Calgary this spring and summer.

Alberta’s most populous city is conducting an online survey to discover if park users want to be able to consume alcohol at designated picnic areas.

If there’s enough support, the City of Calgary could opt to launch a pilot project with some designated alcohol-friendly picnic sites this summer.

Trevor Poth, Red Deer’s parks superintendent, is very much aware of Calgary’s online public engagement process.

While the City of Red Deer is not considering relaxing alcohol prohibitions in local parks at this time, Poth said city officials will be keeping an eye on what the outcomes are in Calgary for future reference.

“We’re interested to see what Calgary decides. At this point, Red Deer is not interested in being a leader in (allowing) alcohol consumption in parks,” explained Poth.

The city prefers letting larger municipalities test these kinds of changes, and then consider whether they would benefit local residents.

The only alcohol allowed in Red Deer’s parks system requires a special permit. A beer garden is permitted during Bard on Bower’s Shakespeare in the park presentations, for instance, and Poth said beer tents have been allowed at some other special events, such as mud runs.

While some city residents might occasionally sneak a glass of wine in with their picnic lunch, this is unlikely to draw the attention of a bylaw officer unless they were being disruptive, said Poth.

The problem with allowing alcohol consumption in parks is that things could turn rowdy, ruining the day for other users, he added.

Calgary officials have stressed that public intoxication prohibitions and penalties would remain in place, regardless of whether some alcohol consumption is allowed.

The Town of Sylvan Lake does not allow any alcohol drinking in its parks, including along the lakeshore.

Joanne Gaudet, the town’s communications co-ordinator, said as far as she knows, the public has not been clamouring for a change.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Red Deer would be the site of potential TV show

A potential TV show aims to bring Red Deer kids across the… Continue reading

Oilsands firms considering diluent recovery units to boost crude-by-rail volumes

CALGARY — Ongoing pipeline project delays and growth in crude-by-rail capacity from… Continue reading

Ex-Eskimos CEO gets new job among flurry of Alberta government appointments

Ex-Eskimos CEO gets job among flurry of appointments EDMONTON — Len Rhodes,… Continue reading

WATCH: ‘Lots to see and do’ at Pioneer Days in Red Deer

Sunnybrook Farm Museum is celebrating its 24th annual Pioneer Days this weekend.… Continue reading

Your community calendar

Thursday The Red Deer and District Garden Club hosts its annual Flower… Continue reading

Alberta suspects lead Mounties on chase before their capture in Camrose

CAMROSE, Alta. — Mounties from the Wetaskiwin, Alta., detachment had their hands… Continue reading

Man dies in hospital after aggravated assault in Winnipeg, police say

Winnipeg police say a man is dead after he was allegedly assaulted… Continue reading

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

MONTREAL — More than seven years after Raif Badawi was thrown in… Continue reading

Islamic State claims bombing at Kabul wedding that killed 63

KABUL — The suicide bomber stood in the middle of the dancing,… Continue reading

Hundreds of thousands turn out for peaceful HK protest

Hong Kong streets were turned into rivers of umbrellas on Sunday as… Continue reading

Red Deer Braves knock off undefeated Saskatoon Cubs at 18U AAA Westerns

Braves lefty Reese DeRuyter throws a complete game, one-hitter in the victory

Two men seriously injured after small plane crashes in Alberta field

BLACK DIAMOND, Alta. — Two people were injured in a plane crash… Continue reading

Most Read