madmatt wrote:We have a fairly large camp (65-80 people) with a big public bar and lounge area that has a big, busy, public happy hour at 3pm daily. Last year, our happy hours got VERY busy, a couple with nearly 1,000 (we had great DJs!) Anyhoo, the bar got so busy that the scene attracted the attention of law enforcement, so they did a sting operation.
We barely talked our way out of two $1,000 tickets for serving a minor for a couple of our campmates, despite having a big, visible "No Minors Served" sign, and we actually asked all young looking people "are you over 21?" We didn't actually require people to show the ID because it was soooo busy and we thought that was sufficient. The Pershing County Sheriffs disagreed!
Burning Man Organization should do more public awareness raising - perhaps at the point of a ticket purchase or at the front gate - to underscore that minors can get themselves and others in BIG trouble by drinking at the bars.
Obviously, we are responsible for our own compliance with the law, but a big part of it involves people tricking us into breaking the law.
I think this is a very serious problem at Burning Man, and I'd love some public discourse about it and some discussion of possible ways to improve the situation.
I'll start: This year, during happy hour, we will probably rope off the front of our bar and have someone checking IDs and stamping people, so that our bartenders don't have to do it inside. But wow, what a BUZZKILL to have to do that on the playa.
Honestly, if you have bartenders that cant tell someones age over 21, they might not be the right bartender for your job.
Expecting people to bring their ids for a drink is crazy. In my 15 years on the Playa, i have NEVER carried my id around. Why risk losing it out there and having to get a new one back in reality land. Do what you gotta do though.
I personally am not a bartender BUT i can tell if someone is over 21. If that 1 person looks under age, dont give them a drink. Kick them outta your camp, do what ever you gotta do.
By the way, it's not BMORGS responsibility to cover a camps ass if the camp decides to serve alcohol. It's strictly on the camp.