Opinion Matters

With Gazette Opinion Editor Greg Peck

Might Pedal Tavern come to Janesville?

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Greg Peck
January 9, 2014

Did you know that a state law that took effect Jan. 1 allows patrons to drink alcohol while riding on commercial quadricycles, like the Pedal Tavern? The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that Milwaukee cracked down on Pedal Tavern co-owners Derek Collins and Ryan Lloyd in October 2012 for letting riders bring and drink beer while pedaling. The city attorney reasoned state law allowed open containers in large vehicles such as buses and limousines but not open-air bicycles such as this 16-seat cycle.

So Collins spent a year working with the Tavern League of Wisconsin and lobbying lawmakers about the potential tourism dollars such ventures operations bring. He said the Pedal Tavern caters to bachelor parties, weddings and other events and that the ban on drinking while riding/pedaling cuts ridership 30 percent.

When some Milwaukee businesses expressed concerns about the Pedal Tavern and some people complained about resulting noise, the operators altered routes and operation times and say many local businesses enjoy the extra customer traffic coming from pedal tours.

The Pedal Tavern, I can imagine, might be a big hit in Milwaukee or Madison. Could such a venture succeed in Janesville?

Greg Peck can be reached at (608) 755-8278 or gpeck@gazettextra.com. Or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

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