An overflow crowd turned out last night for a meeting of the city council in the small southeastern Iowa town of Washington. They came to object, heatedly at times, to a plan by the Washington County Fair Board to put up a beer tent at this year’s county fair. There’s never been one before, and the fair’s mostly an event for livestock and 4-H members. But with plans on the drawing board for a new 300-thousand dollar building on the fairgrounds, the fair board’s eyeing the money some other fairs make from beer sales. Even before last night’s meeting, city council members say their phones were ringing off the hook, almost all the calls against the beer sales proposal. Community members got involved as well as parents, and a student group, the “SAFE Coalition,” is circulating a petition with nearly 300 signatures so far. The Washington City Council made it unanimous, and voted five to nothing to deny the beer permit for the fair.
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