Utah alcohol commission may prevent beer being served at Oktoberfest

What’s Oktoberfest without beer?

That’s what fans of the annual Snowbird Ski Resort are asking after Utah's state liquor commission said it is tightening up on issuing permits for weekend events.

The commission approved a permit Tuesday for the ski resort's Father's Day Brewfest for the middle of June but said they may not give the green light for two months of weekend Oktoberfest festivals later this year, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.

David Gladwell, chairman of the state liquor commission, said the permits should be designed for charitable organizations.

“We’re trying to send a signal that we are tightening up and we are reluctant to grant [single-event permits] to for-profit organizations," Gladwell said during the board’s monthly meeting.

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The resort holds 19 state liquor licenses for all its restaurants and bars, yet none of them allows for alcohol in the outdoor area where the Oktoberfest has been held for four decades.

Snowbird general manager Bob Bonar said not being able to sell beer at Oktoberfest would ruin the popular event.

"Not having a liquor permit for Oktoberfest would hurt a lot," Bonar said. "It’s the second best thing we do after powder skiing."