DABC Crackdown Could Leave Summer Festivals Dry

Single Event Permit applications will get increased scrutiny from Director Sal Petilos
Salt Lake City (ABC 4 News) - A crackdown by the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control may be turning Oktoberfest into Oksoberfest.

Oktoberfest has been an annual event at Snowbird since 1973 and the resort says it draws 60,000 visitors a year but to serve beer and wine it needs a Single Event Permit from the DABC. To obtain one it has to be a "civic or community venture" and the DABC is tightening down its review process.

DABC Executive Director Sal Petilos is in charge of approving or denying Single Event Permit applications. On Wednesday he spoke to ABC 4 News about different events, including Oktoberfest at Snowbird.

"It's a commercial venture," Petilos said. "So is that a community enterprise or a civic enterprise is really the question."

Other Summer gatherings like the Greek Festival, Arts festival, Pride Festival and the Utah State Fair have already applied for their permits and had them approved. Snowbird's application for Brewfest on June 14th and 15th is pending approval. They have not submitted an application for Oktoberfest yet. That event is scheduled for Saturdays and Sundays from August 16th to October 12th.

"So we haven't received the application for that yet," Petilos said. "It's one of those things that depending on what's on the application, the information provided to us, we'll review that information and say should the permit issue or not."

Other event's permit applications are "on hold by Director" according to DABC documents. These include upcoming concerts at USANA Amphitheater by groups such as KISS, Def Leppard, Journey, The Steve Miller Band, Styx, Foreigner, Tim McGraw, Keith Urban and Motley Crue.

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