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Would You Like To See Live Music on South Main Street?

Community members and business owners weighed in on a proposal to end a ban on live music in restaurants in the South Main Preservation District.

Community and business owners gave mixed feedback on a proposal to end a ban on live music in restaurants and cafes in the South Main Preservation District. 

Live music is permitted in other places on South Main Street, from to . But the city's zoning codes have long prohibited live music in restaurants, cafes and cafeterias located on South Main Street between Madison and Barbour Street. 

Opposed

Residents spoke out against the change, including Leann Starr, of 1155 Jackson Street. "Would you want to live next to a restaurant with live music where the traffic exceeds the parking spaces?" she asked.

Gryf Ketcherside, who lives at 401 South Second Street, said allowing music on South Main Street would put it within earshot of his home. 

"With the proposal to bring the live music and alcohol to Main Street concerns us a great deal, because of what it's done -- not necessarily to North Main Street-- but because we've seen the shrapnel affect of cars driven by drunk drivers," he said. 

Dan Borgmeyer is a business owner who has bought several properties on South Main Street, including property on which he intends to build condos. He said the other night he heard music outside and realized it was coming from , which is close to where his condos would be built. 

"Now I'm thinking, if I'm going to build 13 or 14 condos, how hard is it going to be to rent them?" he said.

Other people said the change would erode further what so many preservationists have worked hard to protect on South Main -- the balance of business and residential homes. 

In Favor

Harry Sneed, who lives at 510 South Main, said he'd welcome live music on South Main. He said a lot of people had spoken about the possible increase in drunken behavior on South Main, but Sneed accepts that he may have broken windows and other vandalism as part of living on South Main. 

"It's part of the package of living down here," he said. "I hear people coming from North Main at 2 a.m., drunk and yelling and stuff. That's part of what I have to deal with because that's what goes on. I would have no problem opening my windows and listening to music as long as it's at a certain level and stops at a certain time."

Alice and Don Stoviak, owners of on South Main, said they'd like an opportunity to have live music. 

"We're closed and out of there by 11 p.m. We are not a night time business that's going to affect anybody," Alice Stoviak said. 

What do you think? Should live music be allowed at restaurants in the South Main Preservation District? 

katie September 05, 2012 at 04:38 PM
I disagree...a decibel reader will be ingnored and a slap on the wrist fine will be written. I may not object to instrumental / accoustic music, but you don't want to walk down the historic district of main to some heavy metal band seaping out onto the bricks. It would ruin the historic main street ambiance! Also, if you don't think it will effect the crime rate, go back and look at what's happened on the other end of the street over the last several years. This is not where we want to go. We don't want to be like every other strip mall / suburb. We are special. Lets keep it that way. That's what people come to see, not another bar.
Agustus Brandenburger September 05, 2012 at 06:29 PM
When you survey the businesses that occupy South Main you will find that only the resturants that occupy this part are open after 6. It becomes pretty deserted and I dont find that the addition of music will harm the other business owners. The residential occupants of course need to be taken into account and this should be considered conditional to the issuance of permits.
Jacinta Weaver September 05, 2012 at 10:08 PM
Steve, I am not scared of what might happen, I am scared of what will happen. Since January of 2011 we have sustained over $32,000 in automobile damages due to hit and run drunk drivers. These drivers left Main St. facilities one at 7:30 P.M.and the other at 1:15 A.M. on two different nights and hit our cars parked in front of the house. These were not young Lindenwood students. One was in her fifties and the other , 28. That's just me. On my block my neighbors have had other trouble with drunks: urination, mirrors hit off cars, yelling, fighting. Tell you what, I will make a deal, let these establishments have their music and throw out the alcohol. The music won't bother me one bit. I have given North Main a trial for 27 years. I have all the proof I need. Just say NO to booze and music.
Steve Barteau September 06, 2012 at 12:43 AM
Your blaming music for an alcohol problem. I'm sure the problem exists over any given area of the city. To blame music doesn't make sense. People are still going to eat and drink weather it be on Main or anywhere else. Were these drivers coming from Baha?(music) or Big A's? (no music). Places like Braden's or the Little Hills winery are perfect little venues for 1 to 2 man acoustic type settings. I don't think that having a little entertainment will increase the chances of bad behavior.
Carl Fontiac September 06, 2012 at 03:18 AM
Having performed on Main Street for over 20 years, I have seen establishments come and go. There is a difference between a restaurant that also has music in the afternoon or evenings, and a bar/nightclub. The clientele is different; the crowds are different, the reason for going is different. Restaurants typically are not going to attract the 21 yr old college student, of the stumbling drunks. They will attract a crowd that wants to sit and relax and perhaps listen to some music. Music on a nice afternoon and/or evening will enhance the atmosphere of the entire block, and make it more of a destination for folks who do not want to get falling-down drunk. Music - yes.

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