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The Folly Beach alcohol ban

Staff Pick

Beach weather is almost upon us. By mid-March, a sunny Saturday that hits the low 70s can mean backed-up traffic on Folly Road, long before summer officially begins. And it’s that way each year. Even though September boasts comparable weather to May, you won’t find nearly as many beachgoers in the fall as in the spring. The novelty simply wears off. And that’s why it’s still too early to assess the effect of the permanent alcohol ban that Folly Beach imposed last August, following a July 4 liquor-fueled buffoon-rumble. Sure, the ban supporters claimed an immediate impact, but ask an old-timer what August was like in 1962 on Folly, and they’ll tell you that after the Fourth, you don’t expect to keep up early summer’s level of visitors. So if the ban continues to discourage visitors to Folly, it could spell trouble for the oversaturated business community on the beach. And some of those folks may wish they’d spoken up and organized against a ban a little sooner. A group called Voices of Reason is currently building support for a tweaked partial-ban, but it may be too little too late for those who want to legally sip while they take an ocean dip. —Stratton Lawrence
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