During a discussion Wednesday of the city’s upcoming community survey, the Woodbury City Council briefly talked about asking residents whether beer and wine should be available at the Bielenberg Sports Center.
Woodbury plans to begin construction this spring on a new $21.8 million field house to replace the aging dome. The city is also seeking a new food service provider for the facility.
Councilman Christopher Burns broached the topic Wednesday as the council was going through the proposed questions for the survey.
He said the idea of selling beer and wine at Bielenberg hasn’t been discussed at the council level as part of the expansion process.
“Maybe we should get some constituent feedback,” Burns said.
Staff is checking into whether beer and wine are a possibility under state law. If state liquor laws allow, the city will ask the question on the survey, according to Mary Van Milligen, assistant to the city administrator.
The city will likely select a food service provider before the survey comes back, she said, and information gleaned from the survey will be provided to the lessee “to help them form their business plan and develop the space.”
While Burns is open to finding out what residents think about the idea, Burns said he hasn’t formulated an opinion one way or the other.
“Frankly, I don’t know how I feel about it,” he told Patch.
Burns said he plans to speak with the youth sports community about the idea. “I’d like to hear their thoughts,” he said.
It might not be something that happens right away, Burns said, but it would be nice for the city to “get ahead of the curve on this.”
He noted that alcohol is available at the National Sports Center facility in Blaine, and it’s his understanding that it works like the State Fair or Woodbury Days—with a designated area for beer and wine consumption—and is popular with adult hockey leagues.
Burns said the Bielenberg Sports Center is typically more used by youth groups, but in the future “it might be a better fit.”
The city budgeted $23,500 for the cost of conducting the survey.