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Dean Musser Jr. | The Journal Gazette
Crews begin work on the outfield bar at Parkview Field on Monday after getting approval for its liquor license.

Beer ’n’ baseball on deck

City granted liquor license for new stadium; state approval next at bat

The marriage of baseball and beer will likely continue in downtown Fort Wayne.

The Allen County Alcohol Beverage Commission board Monday unanimously voted to grant a three-way liquor license at Parkview Field. The board delayed a vote last month because of a lack of a quorum.

But the new ballpark can’t start selling booze right away. The local board’s decision must be affirmed by the state commission, which typically follows local rulings. The state board meets March 17. Opening day for the Fort Wayne TinCaps is April 16.

John Kalb, a longtime opponent of the $130 million Harrison Square project, opposed the liquor license at the hearing. He said the city’s application was faulty and proper notice wasn’t given about the hearing.

After making his presentation, Kalb said he wanted the ballpark to have a liquor permit but that he was simply trying to fight the city on a project he believes has taken many improper steps.

“I’m trying to make a point with the city of Fort Wayne,” he said.

Greg Leatherman, executive director of redevelopment, said he was pleased with the local board’s ruling. He said the city has done everything it can to pass inspections at the stadium. A similar permit is held by Allen County at Memorial Coliseum.

Parkview Field will offer a wider selection of alcholic beverages than was available at Memorial Stadium. According to preliminary drawings, the stadium will have about 15 places where food and alcohol will be served.

Leatherman said those will mostly serve only beer and wine. Mixed drinks would likely be available only at the private bar in the luxury suite section of the stadium and at the outfield bar, which would be open to all ticketed customers.