Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department approves allowing alcoholic beverages at schedule events at city golf courses

The Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department's board of park commissioners approved changes to the parks department's alcohol policy that will allow organizers to serve alcoholic beverages at scheduled leagues and outings on city park golf courses. ( file photo)

Organizers of golf outings and leagues now can serve alcoholic beverages at their events at Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department golf courses.

The parks department’s board of park commissioners approved that change and others in the department’s alcohol policy during a meeting this morning at Citizens Square.

No one spoke against the change at the meeting. The department reportedly received only one comment from the public in advance regarding the proposed change, and that person was in favor of it, the board learned.

The parks department’s alcohol policy previously allowed alcoholic beverages to be served at scheduled events at a dozen parks department locations, such as Headwaters Park and Foellinger Outdoor Theatre. But the policy had limited alcoholic beverages at city golf courses to beer and wine only at a pavilion on the Foster Park Golf Course.

Alcoholic beverages were prohibited on the Foster Park golf course and at golf courses at McMillen and Shoaff parks.

Under the changes approved today:

• Organizers of scheduled golf outings, leagues and tournaments at the Foster Park, McMillen Park and Shoaff Park golf courses can serve alcoholic beverages at their events, including both in the clubhouse and on the course.

• Members of the general public who are golfing on their own still are prohibited from consuming alcoholic beverages at city golf courses.

• The newly approved alcohol policy expands the areas where alcohol can be served at scheduled events at Salomon Farm Park to include the park Learning Center, two small barns and the Salomon Farm homestead. Previously, alcohol could be served only in the park’s old barn and a tent outside it.

• The proposed changes also would allow alcohol to be served at Promenade Park and the Fort Wayne Park Foundation Pavilion in the park. The pavilion and park tentatively are scheduled to open in June 2019.

For any golf outing or rental event, the organizer of the event must first get Indiana State Excise Police permission to serve alcohol at the event and must use licensed bartenders to do so, parks officials said previously.

The policy changes that were approved are just for the parks department’s alcohol policy, said Steve McDaniel, parks department director. Fort Wayne City Council now will have to vote to amend city ordinances to include the same wording changes adopted by the park board, McDaniel said.