Damakant Jayshi

The Wausau Public Health and Safety committee on Monday approved a tweaked ordinance to continue to allow pubs, bars and taverns to block off a portion of a street for outdoor parties after securing permission from the city.

The decision comes in the wake of a request from two west-side bars on either side of Elm Street between North Second and North Third Avenues – Matt’s 101 Pub and the Chatterbox Bar – for a Halloween-themed block party on Saturday, Nov. 4. The designated area, typically the street outside the establishment, would be temporarily closed for the special event. All such parties must end by 10 p.m.

City officials say it is slightly amended from the original ordinance adopted in June which deals with such events. The ordinance was to sunset on Oct. 31.

Now, the amended ordinance is likely to continue from Nov. 1 onward. Assistant City Attorney Tara Alfonso said the city has created a new ordinance to remove any confusion.

The new language added to Wausau’s municipal code allows patrons to buy alcohol from bars and consume it outdoors in some situations. Under ‘Other Block Parties,’ the added portion says “alcohol not in the original package or container may be sold for consumption off the premises” as perstate statutes.

Committee Chair Lisa Rasmussen said the new rules will likely mimic Concerts on the Square.

During the discussion, committee members Lou Larson and Chad Henke said they wanted to ensure that people enjoying the party need not have to worry about getting a ticket or being in a wrong area.

The measure now heads to the full Wausau City Council for its consideration.