Students Speak as Maryville City Council Revisits Bar Age Limit

By Jonathan Cooper |

Published 06/09 2014 05:38PM

Updated 06/09 2014 10:55PM

(MARYVILLE, Mo.) After more than a year of debate about restricting bar access to those under 21 in Maryville, the city council is meeting Monday night to revisit the issue.

This comes after the previous city council voted to raise the minimum age in January.

With the law set to go into effect in just a few weeks, Northwest students are anxiously awaiting what the city will decide.

At issue is whether bars in Maryville can allow 19 and 20-year-olds to enter their building. It's an issue that has sparked debate on both sides for more than a year.

The city council voted in January to restrict bar access to those 21 and older - the legal drinking age.

That came after the council voted down a similar ordinance in 2013.

But with the new law set to go into effect in July, a new city council and new mayor is revisiting the issue.

The Student Response

"It's the college experience," said Katie Pattison, a Northwest student. "I think it's a given that kids are going to try and drink."

Pattison, like many other students at Northwest, would be affected by the law the most.

"I think until they find other activities for students under the age of 21 to do, it will always be an issue," Pattison said.

Alex Melo, a junior at Northwest, said she sees underage kids abuse the privilege that get into bars.

"I know people who either know the bartenders and can get drinks or they just go to somebody older to get them a drink and make sure someone else holds it," Melo said.

But no matter what the city council decides, students say being responsible will help prevent any issues.

"I think that is what college is about is finding your responsibilities and learning from your experiences," Pattison said.

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