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Liquor license transfers approved

August 16, 2010

 Logan Township OKs beer sales for new eatery, Giant Eagle

Logan Township supervisors voted Thursday to accept two proposed liquor license transfers that will introduce beer sales at Giant Eagle and pave the way to open a sports-focused restaurant. 

Pittsburgh attorney Mark Kozar, representing the owners and operators of Giant Eagle and Champs Sports Bar & Grill, said both parties are now ready to submit liquor license applications to the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, which has the final say.

Processing will probably take a few months at the minimum, Kozar said.

In the meantime, Giant Eagle owner/operators Bill and Marc McKillop will keep planning development of a cafe within their grocery store where patrons will be able to buy up to two beers to consume on-site with food, or to purchase a maximum of two six-packs for takeout.

The store's proposed renovations show a cafe, with indoor and outdoor seating, for 48 patrons at the Logan Town Centre location. A wall will be built around the cafe's outdoor seating to restrict access. Five to 10 employees will be hired, Kozar said.

Bill McKillop said he will enforce restrictions currently used at other Giant Eagle locations with liquor licenses. Beer purchases will be limited to two cash registers, and every buyer will be asked to show an identification card with a birth date.

"Even if you're 85, we're still going to need an ID," McKillop said.

Supervisor Jim Patterson asked about efforts to monitor on-site consumption. McKillop said the employees will go through training to address that.

"We don't want to be a bar," McKillop said. "We're a grocery store."

Cove Beverage owner Kevin Luensmann asked supervisors to reject the proposed transfer, pointing out that as a beer distributor, he is prohibited from selling grocery store items.

"In January, I'd like to be able to sell milk, bread, toilet paper and a case of beer," Luensmann said.

Township solicitor Larry Clapper suggested Luensmann appeal to state lawmakers.

Scott Lucchesi, who owns Champs Sports Bar & Grill on Atherton Street in State College, requested the liquor license transfer to open another Champs in the former Don Pablo's at 205 Charlotte Drive.

Kozar said his client is prepared to put $1.5 million into renovations and furnishings.

"The building was sitting empty for a couple of years, and the pipes froze," Lucchesi said. "Half a million of that will probably be put into the kitchen."

The facility will be staffed by 94 part-time employees, Kozar said. Plans show seating for up to 278 people inside and 72 on an outside patio.

 From the Altoona Mirror


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