Moms, here’s a question for you. How many times per week do you take your kids to a beer garden? I don’t ask sarcastically, I sincerely want to know.
I don’t recall ever taking my kids to a beer garden after school. Have I had a drink with my kids around? Of course. But taking them to a drinking establishment just hasn’t made my bucket list. It’s not that there is anything wrong with enjoying a cold one with your kid in tow (as long as it’s just one or two and you’re not inebriated). Sure, mom has every right to relax how she sees fit, but if a beer garden banned kids at 4pm, how big a deal is it really?
Apparently, it’s quite an issue. Local moms are up in arms since Greenwood Park, a very popular watering hole in Brooklyn, New York, announced that starting today, children were no longer welcome after 4pm.
Some say they have every right to an afternoon drink and the inconsiderate, young, and single folk who don’t want kids around should just wait until they find themselves a frazzled mom themselves who needs a 3pm beer. Others say the real reason behind the ban are the large number of teachers in the neighborhood who patronize the establishment once school gets out and who don’t necessarily want to see students (or their mothers) when they are trying to relax.
Owner Diane Vasilakos says the push came from teachers:
“They are surrounded by children all day. They don’t want to also see them here.”
So the moms want to be able to drink in front of their kids and teachers want to be able to drink without any little eyes (or even worse, parental eyes) watching their every move. In a NY Daily News article, one mom of four said the teachers don’t want mothers in there either:
“They don’t want us to see them drink. Some of them get very sloppy. Four is too early for sure. It pretty much means that they don’t want us here with the kids.”
Here’s the thing. If a responsible mom or a teacher has a drink or two, who cares? On the other hand, if teachers are drinking to excess, it’s no wonder why they wouldn’t want to be seen or heard. I understand why teachers wouldn’t be able to relax in a place where so many parents and kids are. We all know that young kids would be giddy to see their teachers after school and probably talk/interact with them, and some parents might take it as an opportunity to chat up why Johnny is having trouble keeping quiet or what they are covering in Math, etc… In our day of technology overload, older kids might snap candid photos that could easily ended up on Facebook and Instagram. Those are all very real possibilities.
Greenwood Park to its credit has a lot more than beer, and therein lies the problem. It’s more than just a bar. In a neighborhood where there is not of places to eat or grab a snack (but there are at least two schools right outside), naturally parents would want to grab a snack, meal or drink on the way home. Their menu is inviting and unless you’re willing to walk quite a few blocks, there is not much else around. It also has three bocce ball courts on the premises. Still, they do coin themselves a ‘beer garden’ and have an extensive menu selection of brews, including 60 beer tap lines, an indoor bar and an outdoor cargo bar. So, you can see how young people, including teachers, would want to stop by after a rough day’s work looking for an escape.
In the end, none of this will matter because like all businesses, Greenwood Park will do what works. If teachers spend more at the bar because of the kid ban, then parents and their offspring will have to find another place to hang out. But if they find that parents and their kids brought in more dough, you can bet that ban will be lifted pretty fast, and leave teachers searching for another afterschool pub.
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