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Super Bowl Alcohol Ban: Would Limiting Alcohol Prevent Riots in San Francisco on Game Day?

Travelers Today       By    Katie McFadden

Updated: Jan 25, 2013 12:14 PM EST

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Super Bowl 2014 is scheduled for February 2nd, but that date could change if the cold weather continues. (Photo : Reuters)

Would an alcohol ban on Super Bowl Sunday curb riots in San Francisco? That's what Mayor Ed Lee is suggesting.

With the San Francisco 49ers in the year's Super Bowl, mayor Lee is hoping fans won't celebrate the same way that they did after the San Francisco Giants' World Series win against Detroit in October. After the victory, 36 people were arrested for felonies. Many lit bonfires in the middle of streets, broke business windows and even set a bus on fire.

Mayor Lee hopes that doesn't happen again, so he's suggesting that bars to place restrictions on the amount of alcohol they serve and for stores to limit the amount of alcohol they sell before the big game on Feb. 3.

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"We want the city to be both celebratory and safe for everyone," Mayor Ed Lee said, according to SF Appeal. "I'm really concerned about the small businesses that got hurt during the World Series."

Lee plans to tour the area and "suggest that [businesses] serve something (other) than heavy alcohol during times of celebration, because that inebriation sometimes doesn't help with people who want to maybe go beyond the bounds of acceptability in their celebration."

The mayor won't actually place a ban on alcohol in San Francisco. He just wants to remind businesses and football fans to be responsible.

"He's just suggesting that all business owners serve responsibly, and most businesses do," Lee's spokeswoman, Christine Falvey told SFGate.

Business owners understand where the mayor is coming from, but they think putting restrictions will be hard to do as it will be bad for business on one of the biggest drinking days of the year.

Many claim that they already do what they can to prevent criminal activity.

"Our members are very responsible, and we don't serve alcohol to people who are intoxicated. It's against the law to do that," Rob Black, executive director of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association told SFGate.

Super Bowl 2013 is taking place in New Orleans, but there is no doubt that San Franciscans will be celebrating right in their own city, especially if the 49ers defeat the Baltimore Ravens.


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