drinking in parks

Ontario government to allow drinking in parks and public areas

Toronto has long wanted to drink in the park, and that could soon be allowed, if all goes according to plan. 

Part of Ontario's budget reveal today includes an announcement that municipal governments will be permitted to make their own individual decisions about whether people can drink in parks

Toronto as a city has long expressed interest in legalizing the activity, with the mayor often throwing his support behind the idea as well. 

Former city councillor Mary Margaret-McMahon helped push legalization forward, and many in the municipal government were behind the idea. 

Along with this announcement, the province also introduced other alcohol-related laws, most of which should come into effect within a few months. 

Here's a roundup of the alcohol-related changes coming to Ontario: 

  • Beer and wine will definitely be sold at corner stores, as that commitment was made official and reiterated
  • A possible increase to the tax on wine
  • Cities and towns will be allowed to make their own decisions regarding drinking in parks
  • Licensed drinking establishments will be able to serve alcohol at an earlier time of day, as bars, restaurants, and golf courses will be able to serve booze at 9 a.m. (instead of the current 11 a.m.)
  • Last call could stretch past 2 a.m.
  • The prescribed serving amount at wineries and breweries will be removed
  • Advertising for happy hours and other booze-related happenings will be amended
  • Casinos can now serve free alcohol, and can advertise it
  • Tailgating will be permitted at sporting events
Lead photo by

Hector Vasquez


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