Bud Light venue name gets last call

Staff writerJune 17, 2010 

— Raleigh’s new outdoor amphitheater won’t be named after Bud Light.

The N.C. Alcohol and Beverage Control Commission on Thursday rejected an exemption to state law that would have allowed Raleigh to name its 5,000-seat concert venue after the beer, a proposal that would have brought the city $1.5 million over five years.

State alcohol laws set strict rules for how alcohol is sold, bought and advertised in the state. The statutes prevent public venues from being named after alcoholic beverages and brands, and prevent governments from giving the appearance of endorsing alcohol.

Both ABC commissioners voted down the exemption Thursday morning after hearing comments from students, residents and leaders of non-profit groups, all of whom opposed the exemption.

“The dynamics of opening this kind of competition in advertising field would be difficult to contain if we set this precedent,” said Jon Williams, the commission’s chairman.

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