ST. LOUIS– St. Louis City awarded a liquor license for a new beer garden in Francis Park but it didn’t come without some roadblocks from neighbors.
An attorney for Rockwell Brewing Company (RBC) says its license for the beer garden was approved this morning and it hopes to have a soft opening in a few weeks.
Nick Riggio, a Francis Park neighbor launched a petition to keep the beer garden from opening. The protest petition was filed in July and the city finally took up the case today.
“The primary focus of what’s going on down at the park is to provide concession as well as rental equipment for pickleball and tennis courts. Obviously, a brewery is operating it but the city of St. Louis, when they awarded it, as they communicated to me, felt we were the best candidate and we could do it as a responsible operator,” said Sanders.
Sanders says there will be nonalcoholic beverages served as well as food.
Nick Sanders, RBC’s lawyer, said he tried to meet with Riggio on several occasions to discuss his concerns.
Riggio said there are four churches and four schools surrounding the park. He fears the neighborhood’s family-friendly atmosphere might now change with the beer garden opening.
“This is just going to bring in elements of hooligans and other people that that will destroy the park,” said Riggio.
He also mentioned the deed for the park states it should be used for recreational and park purposes. He says there are no conditions addressing a beer garden.
A coffee house used to be in the spot where the beer garden will operate.