"package store"

Rita Pullman rcpullman5 at HOTMAIL.COM
Thu Aug 31 23:26:07 UTC 2000

     When I was growing up outside Winston-Salem, NC in the 1960's, you
could only buy liquor in W-S at the state-run ABC store.  However, if you
knew where to look, there were local "shot houses" where you could buy
liquor by the drink - all us Southern Baptists knew where they were, but
pretended they didn't exist, because we certainly knew no one who frequented
those establishments. (Joke: What is the difference between Methodists and
Baptists?   Methodists will speak to you in the liquor store.)
     In NC, there are still several dry counties (McDowell and Yadkin come
to mind).  I live in Asheboro, pop. 20,000, the largest dry NC city - no
alcohol sold at all, not even off-premises.  However, we are in Randolph
County, which allows each municipality to vote whether to have beer/wine
sales.  Asheboro has historically voted no in the alcohol referenda, but
Randleman (5 miles away) has off-premises sales and a proliferation of
"package stores" which sell only beer and wine.  I don't believe liquor
sales are permitted.  Teenagers in Asheboro speak of having to "make a trip
to R" in order to obtain libations for parties.  I am sure Asheboro will
eventually succumb to "progress," but I rather like its current reputation
as a cultural backwater on the edge of more "progressive" cities such as

R. Pullman

>From: Bob Haas <highbob at MINDSPRING.COM>
>Reply-To: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>Subject: Re: "package store"
>Date: Thu, 31 Aug 2000 14:57:59 -0400
>That's certainly the case in North Carolina.  And not all towns have either
>one.  When I was growing up in Boone, NC, the entire county (Watauga) was
>dry save for the town of Blowing Rock, which was a summer resort and/or
>for many well-to-do folks from colder climes.  The only ABC store in the
>county was in Blowing Rock, as were the only "fully stocked" package
>as well as the county's only bars.
>That changed in 1986 when Boone voted in alcohol, which meant that package
>stores could sell beer and wine, as could grocery stores and supermarkets,
>as could restaurants so long as 51 percent of their revenue came from sales
>other than alcohol, and the local ABC store would be the only place in town
>where one could buy liquor.  To buy a "liquor drink," as my friends and I
>only half-mockingly refer to them, one has to travel to a restaurant in
>Blowing Rock.  It's a little complicated, but if you were raised Southern
>Baptist, or one of the various denominations of Bible Belt Christianity in
>the region, you understand it.  You may not like it, but you understand it.
>I've never looked into it, but I assume that there are still plenty of dry
>townships throughout the state.
> > From: Jessie Emerson <jessie at SIRSI.COM>
> > Reply-To: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> > Date: Thu, 31 Aug 2000 13:45:05 -0500
> > Subject: Re: "package store"
> >
> > I could be wrong, but I believe that "package store" in the South
> > with it the connotation of an establishment (like a gas station) that
> > beer and maybe wine, but not liquor.  You go to a "liquor store" or
> > store" or "ABC store" to buy hard liquor.
> >
> > Jessie Emerson

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