The Vineyard Gazette – Martha’s Vineyard News

A new business, a revamped festival and an outdoor seating proposal were all weighed by the Oak Bluffs selection committee on Tuesday as the businesses begin to revamp their strategies, adapting to the fall season.

The board has approved a new business and entertainment license for Austin Grande, owner of Indian restaurant Bombay. Formerly located in the Martha’s Vineyard Airport Business Park, Mr. Grande will relocate the restaurant to Sea Smoke’s former location on Oakland Avenue.

He said he intended to open the restaurant in about a month and noted that it would operate 365 days a year from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

The select council was broadly supportive of the business, but encouraged Mr. Grande to establish a strong working relationship with his neighbours. Not included in his application on Tuesday, Mr Grande said he could apply for away places next year.

“I would love to pursue it in the spring with a liquor license,” he said.

Later in the meeting, the council rejected a request for outdoor seating at The Alley bar on Kennebec Avenue, after a month-long trial period with 10 outdoor seats drew criticism neighbors. At a meeting earlier this month, the board heard complaints from neighbors about the bar, largely focusing on the noise emanating from the small establishment.

On Tuesday, Howard Miller, an attorney for owner Kelley Morris, argued that The Alley’s 10-seat patio is no different from similar setups at places like Offshore Ale and restaurants on Oak Bluffs Harbor.

“Summer community is really an outdoor activity,” Miller said. “Particularly at Oak Bluffs.”

Some members of the select committee said neighbors’ complaints about the bar were too loud to ignore and noted that Ms Morris should have coordinated better with her neighbors during the probationary period.

“Unfortunately the location isn’t the best for this sort of thing,” board member Gail Barmakian said.

Board member Ryan Ruley, the only negative vote in a motion to deny the request for outdoor seating at The Alley, noted that police had no problems with the bar during the period of ‘test.

“We haven’t had a noise complaint,” he said. “I would say this is probably one of the only establishments in town that doesn’t have it all summer.”

Mr Ruley encouraged Ms Morris to re-evaluate her outdoor seating plan and noise-abatement strategy, noting it might be possible to sit outside at the bar with a revamped approach. Board member Brian Packish withdrew from the discussion.

Also on Tuesday, Innovation Arts and Entertainment CEO Adam Epstein proposed a plan for Oysterfest at Waban Alley Park from September 29 to October 1, 2023, intended to welcome up to a thousand visitors to the park during the working hours. paying.

“It has a short but successful history,” Mr Epstein said of the event, created by Nevette Previd “[She] demonstrated a clear proof of concept that we… seek to develop.

Mr Epstein said the event in the past has been expensive to attend and he wants to open it up to a wider audience by charging a small entry fee with food and drink paid for inside.

The select committee broadly backed the event, but opted to postpone any approval until Mr Epstein presents a new plan with input from police, fire, board of health and emergency services.

The council decided to put the event on the agenda for its next meeting, offering Mr. Epstein time to coordinate with city officials.

“I just think it’s a really good thing for us to have in our city,” board member Brian Packish said.

Finally on Tuesday, council approved a road closure for Vineyard Avenue from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Halloween to allow for safe trick-or-treating.

“It’s a tradition at Oak Bluffs that we all know,” Mr. Ruley said.

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