Voters in a dry New Jersey seaside community that calls itself America’s Greatest Family Resort have decided to stay that way, rejecting a proposal that would have let restaurant patrons bring their own wine or beer to enjoy with dinner.
The issue is one that has roiled Ocean City for decades. It lost Tuesday by a 2-to-1 ratio.
It pitted traditionalists who fear that allowing drinking at restaurants would wreck the family-friendly atmosphere Ocean City has worked hard to build against those who say the city’s struggling eateries can’t afford to lose any more business to mainland restaurants that serve liquor.
Some restaurants informally tolerated BYOB until a 1984 city ordinance prohibited it.
Motel owner Edward Dolceamore says Ocean City’s appeal lies in its rejection of public drinking.