Spring Break in Port Aransas is going to be quite different this year, and many students may decide to go elsewhere.
On Thursday, the Port Aransas City Council passed a final vote targeted towards banning alcohol on the beaches during spring break. The vote was unanimous.
Currently, there is a ban on alcohol consumption on Port Aransas beaches from midnight to 7 a.m. on weekdays, and midnight to noon on weekends. The hours will differ during the two weeks of spring break in March (to all day long if city council decides), and those hours will be solidified by the Port Aransas city council next month.
The ordinance has an exception to allow alcohol consumption in an RV or a tent. According to Police Chief Scott Burroughs, "The ordinance will still read like it is, but it will give (city council) the authority to modify it to a different time."
As no surprise, the changes taking place are being made in effort to decrease the amount of disturbances the city has experienced over the last five years. Beer bottles have been thrown at cars, spring breakers get overly intoxicated and display aggressive and dangerous behavior, and the beaches get completely trashed.
If the city council does decide to prohibit alcohol consumption completely during the weeks of spring break, it is likely that there will be strong enforcement behind the decision, regardless of the law enforcement's leniency that the public beaches have experienced over the last few years. College-aged partiers are still likely to be drinking despite any sort of laws that tell them when they can and can't party, which will result in a lot of citations being distributed.
It is safe to say that the new drinking hours in Port Aransas will affect how many college students and other spring breakers head to those beaches, but in the end, that decrease might be better for the city's residents and the beaches themselves.