June 30, 2021

Montgomery Parks Ends Program of Allowing Alcohol Without a Permit in 13 Parks Effective Immediately

Montgomery Parks has suspended the park directive allowing alcohol consumption without a permit in 13 parks. The suspension, which is effective immediately, is in response to the end of the COVID-19 State of Emergency issued by the State of Maryland. During the state of emergency, the State of Maryland and Montgomery County permitted the delivery and take-out of alcohol by food and beverage establishments.

Montgomery Parks launched the Picnic in the Park program in August 2020, in partnership with Visit Montgomery’s MoCo Eats initiative, to bolster area restaurants in response to the impacts from COVID-19.

The directive allowed alcohol consumption within designated areas in 13 parks: Acorn Urban Park, Carroll Knolls Local Park, Ellsworth Urban Park, Elm Street Urban Park, Flower Avenue Urban Park, Germantown Town Center Urban Park, Jesup Blair Urban Park, Norwood Local Park, Olney Manor Recreational Park, Takoma Urban Park, Wall Local Park, Wheaton Local Park and Wheaton Regional Park.

“As we begin to return to normal, we are suspending the pilot program allowing alcohol in the parks,” said Mike Riley, the director of Montgomery Parks. “While the program was in effect, we had no reported alcohol-related incidents or calls for service in our 13 pilot parks and parks patrons enjoyed the ability to eat and drink outdoors with friends and family. We were happy that parks were able to play a role in supporting local businesses and provide a safe outlet for social interaction.”