A petition with more than 300 signatures against a local restaurant’s application to sell alcohol is circulating in the New Silver Beach neighborhood. Residents there are upset that drinking would cause safety issues in their neighborhood.
Tea Room owner Michael Pacella is applying to the Falmouth Select Board for an all-alcoholic beverage license for his restaurant at 196 Crystal Spring Avenue. The license would allow drinking from 11 AM to 11 PM daily.
The public hearing was slated for Monday, July 27, but was rescheduled for August because it was not advertised properly, select board chairwoman Megan E. English Braga said.
Dennis E. O’Connell of Silver Beach Avenue said granting the license would create a public safety issue, as children often ride their bikes in the streets to the tennis courts, harbor and beach. He spearheaded the Committee in Opposition to the Tea Room Liquor License to organize the neighbor’s opposition to the application.
“We have been consistently sending emails and letters to the board in hopes that they will not approve this application,” he said.
This is the second year in a row Mr. Pacella has applied for a liquor license. Last year, after more than an hour of discussion, the board allowed Mr. Pacella to withdraw his application without prejudice to give him time to work with the neighbors. However, Mr. O’Connell said he has yet to approach the community with his plans.
“People could be drinking there all day, and that does not fit with the area,” Mr. O’Connell said. He characterized the Old Silver Beach neighborhood as “old-school,” where children ride bikes and people walk to and from the beach from the residential area. The Tea Room is at the hub of New Silver Beach, where families have barbecues and arts and craft classes, and watch movies at the tennis courts 40 feet away. He further noted parking is prohibited on the street because it would cause congestion, as the streets are narrow.
“It just doesn’t fit. We don’t want people potentially drinking and getting into their cars when kids are riding their bikes. Furthermore, there is not a need. There are eight or nine establishments in a three-mile radius to get a drink and a meal,” he said.
The rescheduled hearing is set for Monday, August 10, at 7:30 PM.