New Rules Aim To Slow Down Drinking At Scotfest

Friday, September 13th 2013, 10:25 pm
By: News On 6

A new policy calls for the downsizing of pitchers of beer at ScotFest. The new rules will apply to Tulsa's Oktoberfest, too.

They've gone from 64-ounce pitchers to 32-ounce "half yards" this year at Scotfest. Agents with the state's Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission (ABLE) say this change is all about safety.

"I think it's ridiculous. I think the pitchers should have never been done away with," said Steven Devine.

Festival organizer Steve Campbell said a dialogue started among the many organizers who hold festivals at River Parks West.

"It's all about having a good time. You've got great music, you've got great events going on, we've got great selection of beers. I think everyone will just enjoy it," Campbell said.

ABLE agents say they offered their advice on the issue. They say the changes limit the liability the festival has if people drink too much.

"With the cup being half the size of the pitcher, they're going to have more contact with the staff, so the staff will be better able to determine, 'Hey, we need to cut this person off, or it's time we say they probably don't need anymore,'" Agent Erik Smoot said.

Smoot said ABLE wants people to get home safe.

"We wanted to monitor it. We want people to go to these festivals, we want people to have a good time, but at the same time we want people to know it's a safety issue," he said.

Organizers say there's more to their festival than just the pitchers of beer.

"I think the true people coming out for the festival will just get on with enjoying what's going on anyway," Campbell said.

Devine, and his brother, who flew all the way from Edinburgh, Scotland, have a different take on the issue.

"It just cracks us up. I mean, come on, we'll drink 64 ounces no problem," Devine said.

Organizers hope the new beer rules won't hurt attendance. Last year, about 16,000 turned out. This year, they're hoping for 20,000.