ST. CHARLES, Mo. – “With St. Louis City and St. Louis County closing, we’re getting too much traffic,” St. Charles Mayor Dan Borgmeyer said after leaving a meeting with businesses and police.
Borgmeyer said three dance club owners attracting most of the crowds have voluntarily agreed to suspend dancing for now.
“I feel a little bit like the movie ‘Footloose’ but that’s not what this is about,” he said. “This is just about volume.”
Quintessential Dining and Nightlife is one of the three dance clubs who agreed to the new restrictions.
“There’s a mass amount of people who are traveling out here who aren’t making it into the bars that are causing the problem,” said Dennis Dixon, nightclub manager.
Dixon said what you’ve seen outside is not what it looks like inside.
“Everybody is rushing out here but we’re not letting everyone in right now so I think the frustration builds in the people who aren’t able to make it in; they’re not in the first 200 people down here,” he said.
Mayor Borgmeyer said busloads are coming from all around St. Louis to drop off mass partiers on Main Street. He believes many of them are trying to get into the nightclubs to dance.
“(The buses) come down the street, they’ll drop off 20 to 30 people and some of those buses make several trips through the course of the evening,” he said.
He says police officers patrolling the area have tripled from four to 12 over the past five months, at a cost to taxpayers of $77,000 just in overtime.
“The issue’s becoming that the infrastructure can’t hold the people that we’re getting out here,” St. Charles Police Captain Ray Juengst said. “Between what city hall has done with the team there and then all the bars down here working in cooperation, we think we’ve come up with a pretty good plan and we’re gonna try to implement it and see if it works.”
Bars can stay open until their regular time—only dancing is impacted for now—along with the DJ music that would go with it.
We’ll stay on this developing story to see what happens this weekend.