SEARCY, Ark.– For the first time ever a restaurant in Searcy will be serving up booze to customers.
Searcy is located White County which is a dry county.
Rock House won its appeal to the Alcoholic Beverage Control to serve alcohol.
The restaurant is located right across the street from Harding University.
The general manager said the restaurant’s fight to serve alcohol will hopefully bring in more business but also be a step to adding business to the city.
Amy Erwin ate at the restaurant Thursday with her mom.
She said, “I was shocked that it happened.”
Soon soda will not be the only choice for customers to order.
Amy said, “As a Harding student we aren’t allowed to drink and so that might cause problems.”
Amy is not old enough to drink but she still knows the controversy of the location of the first Searcy restaurant to serve alcohol.
“Kind of scared for my friends. Especially for my friends that are 21,” she said.
Amy said she is a sophomore at Harding University. She said she understood why serving more than soda across from her college was the talk around town.
General Manager Craig Robinson talked with us Thursday.
He said, “These doors can be closed and the bar will be at the end of this room here.”
The Alcoholic Beverage Control Board approved the restaurant’s appeal and granted the permit for the restaurant to become a private club. A private club permit allows restaurants in Arkansas to serve alcohol to customers.
Robinson said, “I think it’ll be great for the city of Searcy.”
Amy agreed, “I think it’s really good for Searcy.”
The two people are aware some people in Searcy did not like the decision.
“We don’t have any ill will towards anyone like I said. We’re not forcing anyone to have a drink,” Robinson said.
He said they will first start by serving beer and wine before adding liquor.
Robinson continued that getting the permit was not about just growing the business but also growing as a community.
Amy said, “I think people should drink with their meal if they want to.”
Robinson agreed. He said people should have a choice about what to drink with their meals. It now is a choice that people in Searcy have not had before.
The restaurant has not started serving alcohol but Robinson said they plan to begin serving beer and wine soon.