The demise of "all you can drink nights"
Since 1997, according to The LaCrosse Tribune, at least 12 people in LaCrosse died from alcohol-related incidents. Most of them drowned.
The high number of deaths in LaCrosse stems from the fact it's a "college town" where more than 26 percent of the students reported they were excess drinkers to the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Population Health Institute. This is one of the highest percentages in Wisconsin.
Consequently, as originally reported by Radio 620 WTMJ's Jeff Wagner, The La Crosse City Council is considering banning "all you can drink" (AYCD) specials that are common in LaCrosse bars.
Such specials charge a set amount of money – usually $10-$20 – and then patrons imbibe as much as they want of certain beverages, which usually include inexpensive beers and / or rail spirits.
In Milwaukee, few bars offer AYCD nights anymore. Adam "Hawk" Griffin, owner of Fire on Water, 518 N. Water St., offered it at his bar every Thursday night for years, but got rid of it in 2016.
"Marquette kids ruined it," says Griffin. "And I know it was 'Marquette kids' because I talked to some of the other customers from Marquette, who are great."
Griffin says he was told that Marquette students were organizing outings to his bar through Facebook groups.
"They'd come in and take advantage of the special," says Griffin. "Then they'd steal stuff, pool balls, and it just got to be too much. Now we have $1 off Miller products on Mondays."
Will other local bars continue to offer "aycd" specials? We shall see.
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