Irish Social Club gets help in push for license
By Ed Forry, July 5, 2012
The Boston City Council has asked the Legislature to relax its limits on liquor licenses in Boston so that the Irish Social Club in West Roxbury can regularly serve alcohol to guests again.
The move, which comes even as the council readies for a hearing on ways to convince the legislature to give Boston a lot more liquor licenses, is needed to help preserve “the legacy of Irish and Irish-American culture in Boston” that the club promotes, city councilors Matt O’Malley (West Roxbury, Jamaica Plain) and Steve Murphy (at large) say.
The club shut down last year - and returned its liquor license - but has since has held several fundraisers and organizational drives to stay open.
Currently, the club has to apply to the city for a special liquor license every time it holds an event at which it wants to sell liquor.
O’Malley said the request will seek a special license that would apply only to the Irish Social Club - it could not be transferred or sold elsewhere.
O’Malley, who grew up going to dances at the club, said it is “a safe place, a centrally located place,” for community events. He said the response from the community to restoring the club has been overwhelming - a drive to raise $50,000 for a new sprinkler system raised $100,000.
Murphy called the club “a jewel in the neighborhood of West Roxbury.” Councilor John Connolly, who lives in West Roxbury, said the club and the effort to bring it back “speaks to what makes West Roxbury a great place to live.”
The council voted unanimously in favor and, with support from Mayor Menino, the petition will next need approval from state lawmakers. Senator Mike Rush and Representative Ed Coppinger will take the lead at the State House, supporters say.