• Sen. Ferlo joins fight to stop beer sales at Kennywood


    PITTSBURGH - State Sen. Jim Ferlo, minority chair of the Senate Law and Justice Committee, has expressed is opposition to the proposed sale of beer at Kennywood amusement park.

    In a news release issued Thursday, Ferlo said if the liquor control board grants the petition for beer sales, park attendees and concerned citizens would be permitted to show their support or opposition to the matter at a public hearing held before a liquor license is granted.

    "The setting of Kennywood is family-friendly with many small children and typically younger parents and/ or grandparents present; can't they enjoy one day without the visible abuses of alcohol that will surely surface on a daily basis?" Ferlo said. "I suggest that the next time you ride on the Black Widow you think about the person next to you who may be full of french fry grease and alcohol -- not exactly a happy mixture 90 feet in the air and spinning,"

    Following a public hearing in April, the West Mifflin council approved a liquor license transfer for the park's owner, Festival Fun Park LLC, whose parent company is based in Madrid, Spain, to the amusement park from a closed McKeesport restaurant property the company owns.

    If the license transfer gets approval from the state Liquor Control Board, beer would be sold in a designated location in the park, starting in late June, Kennywood spokesman Jeff Filicko said.

    In a statement, Filicko said, "Our plans to establish a beer garden will be done in a responsible manner that will maintain our family-friendly atmosphere. Kennywood would be just one of many family-friendly venues that cater to children and families while offering beer to responsible adults. We plan to offer the sale and consumption of beer in one specific area to ensure a controlled and family-friendly environment. As always, the safety of our guests and team members will be our main priority."

    The park sold beer for the first time in October during two weekends of Oktoberfest-themed events, using a catering event permit from Sandcastle Water Park in West Homestead, which Festival Fun also owns.

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