Should Pennsylvania follow 30 states and Philadelphia Parks & Recreation's lead and allow alcohol sales in state parks? In Philly, Parks on Tap has been a huge success that can serve as a model.
It's a simple policy change that can bring in more new visitors and more revenue to a parks system with a huge maintenance backlog.
In Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Horticultural Society has developed a program called “Parks on Tap,” which sections off segments of parks in the city for food and alcohol sales along with games, sitting areas, movies, and small concerts. The format has been a huge success, introducing younger people to the city’s parks system while generating new revenue. Some of the most frequent users of the format have been families.
Pennsylvania should follow suit. The statute that oversees the state parks system allows the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to designate facilities to be operated or leased for the sale of alcoholic beverages. Pennsylvania could develop a commonsense strategy that allows for alcohol sales in state parks in a safe, controlled manner.