Nightclub loses liquor license
July 11, 2007
Friday night, Harry O’s club goers were met by locked doors and white flyers directing them to head south, to another bar. The heavy metal tribute band, the Metal Gods, had moved their performance to the Star Bar.
"The Metal Gods were fantastic it was huge," says Star Bar owner John Sutton, who keeps his bar open on Fridays, Saturdays, and for special events in the summer months.
Sutton recalls hearing about the change of venue only three days in advance, when he says event organizers from Mountain Town Stages called scrambling to find a new stage. The Metal Gods concert was part of Mountain Town’s weekend-long fundraiser for Bikers Against Child Abuse. Sutton agreed to host the benefit last-minute at the Star Bar.
Rumors that Harry O’s, one of Park City’s largest nightclubs, lost its liquor license were confirmed Monday by Earl Dorius, the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control’s deputy director of licensing and compliance.
According to Dorius, on June 29, the UDABC commission voted not to renew Harry O’s liquor license so long as Greg Galloway continued to be listed as owner of the private club.
The decision was based on Galloway’s involvement in Salt Lake City’s private club, Club Vortex, which lost its license in April, says Dorius. He explained Club Vortex’s license was revoked because its owners were not in good standing with three tax agencies the Utah Tax Commission, the Department of Workforce Services and the Utah Labor Commission.
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Galloway may not have owned Club Vortex, but according to Dorius, he could have held one of several positions (from board member post to manager) affected by a license revocation. In Utah, those who get their liquor licenses revoked must wait years for a chance to apply for a new one.
"There’s a statute that says that if you’ve got certain individuals that are involved in clubs that have their licenses revoked, the commission may not grant a new license to them for three years," Dorius explained. "And that’s what happened with Greg."
At the June meeting, the commission decided to extend the three-year statute to license renewals a ruling that affected more than just Harry O’s. Dorius reports this month the men’s club Galloway operates in Salt Lake, Golden Trails, also lost its ability to sell alcohol, as did two other clubs owned by others Todd’s Bar and Grill and Trap Door in Salt Lake.
Though Galloway must wait, Harry O’s could re-open with a new license as soon as next week. The UDABC commission agreed to meet July 19 to review Harry O’s license renewal, with new ownership.
"If a new owner gets everything in place from Park City licensing, insurance and bond, there’s a whole host of things they need to assemble and if that all comes in timely, then the commission will consider whether to grant a license to Harry O’s on the 19th," said Dorius. "And if that happens, the license would take effect immediately."