We are soooo excited today! Our sidewalk dining/hospitality/patio area plans have been approved!

We have been working on these plans ever since the City Commission announced that downtown bars could become eligible for sidewalk seating.  In the past, this was only available to restaurants who had a certain percentage of food sales. However, because of the smoking ban that was passed several years ago, the previous City Commission tweaked the sidewalk dining ordinance slightly, and downtown bars who have no other alternative for a patio or deck can now apply for sidewalk seating.

Our plans were unanimously approved at last night's City Commission meeting.

Dave has already begun working on an iron railing- yes, he's building it himself. Unfortunately, since there are city rules and Historic Resources Commission guidelines, we are bound to a very specific style of railing, which means we can't jazz up our fence Sandbar-style with iron palm trees and other gaudy stuff. But, we're not complaining, we're just grateful to have the fence, no matter what it looks like.

The plans have to go through a second reading at next week's City Commission meeting- some sort of procedural thing, I assume- so we won't have the sidewalk seating area ready in time for this weekend's graduation festivities. But it should be up sometime next week!

You don't have to dream anymore about sitting outside sipping a beer or a Bahama Mama…it will soon be a reality!

Our plan's approval was also mentioned in an LJW staff blog.