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Keokuk's Rand Park No Longer Dry, Alcohol OK


The Keokuk City Council is softening its stance against allowing alcohol in one of its largest parks.

Rand Park has been alcohol free for years.

But, the panel routinely approves requests to allow alcohol on other public properties for events like Rollin on the River, Wine Over Water, and Labor Day at the Keokuk Labor Temple.

That all changed last night when the city council reached a consensus to allow the Rand Park Pavilion Commission to set up a beer tent during a concert in late August.

Third Ward Alderman Ron Payne says this is a bad idea.

"If you want to say we can drink all the time and there will never be a problem, go ahead and think that," Payne said, "but I would like someone to guarantee nothing will happen.  Of course, they won’t because they can’t guarantee me.”

The money raised from the concert would go towards improving the pavilion, including repairing the roof and nearby road and landscaping.

Mayor Tom Marion says the 6-3 vote is binding, even though it occurred during a workshop, not an official meeting.

Voting Yes

  • Mike O'Connor - Ward 1
  • Mike Moore - Ward 2
  • Larry Mortimer - Ward 4
  • Susan Dunek - Ward 7
  • Dan Winn - At Large
  • John Helenthal - At Large

Voting No

  • Ron Payne - Ward 3
  • Sandy Pollitt - Ward 5
  • Roger Bryant - Ward 6

Organizers say they will only request permission to serve alcohol during events in Rand Park where it would be appropriate.

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.