Sunday, November 27, 2022

Berret’s secures permit to build permanent outdoor event stage

Berret’s Seafood Restaurant & Taphouse Grill has applied for a special use permit with Williamsburg’s Architectural Review Board to place a stage for live music on the outdoor lawn. (WYDaily/Courtesy of Google Maps)
Berret’s Seafood Restaurant & Taphouse Grill applied for a special use permit with Williamsburg’s Architectural Review Board to place a stage for live music on the outdoor lawn. (WYDaily/Courtesy of Google Maps)

Berret’s Seafood Restaurant and Taphouse Grill now has expanded opportunities for live music in downtown Williamsburg.

While Colonial Williamsburg’s Goodwin Square project was removed from the agenda Thursday, City Council voted to approve an application by Berret’s Seafood Restaurant and Taphouse Grill to build an outdoor event venue — and 8-by-8-foot stage — on its property.

Council voted 4-0 to approve a special use permit for the project, which would be on Colonial Williamsburg’s property. Mayor Paul Freiling recused himself from the vote because he works for Colonial Williamsburg.

The vote also covered the approval of a zoning change that will allow permanent outdoor event spaces with the approval of a special use permit in the B1 Downtown Business District, where Berret’s is located.

“This effort to help an existing business, and one that’s been in town many years, to kind of evolve their business into something even better, I think is a great opportunity for the city and all of its residents and visitors,” Councilman Doug Pons said.

RELATED STORY: Berret’s outdoor stage proposal secures recommendation from Planning Commission

The change now means Berret’s can host live acoustic and amplified music seven days a week any time of the year, although Berret’s said the events will likely be from May to October.

The special use permit would also allow a new 36-by-26-foot patio by the stage. The new patio would add 936 square feet to the Taphouse Grill’s existing 300 square feet of outdoor space.

In other business…

Colonial Williamsburg’s annual ice skating rink also secured a special event license for operations. Council voted unanimously — with Freiling again abstaining — to approve the license.

Jeff Duncan, vice president of real estate for Colonial Williamsburg, said the rink has 15,000 to 20,000 skaters per year.

“I would say it skews more … to locals,” Duncan said of the local versus tourist usage of the rink.

Sarah Fearing
Sarah Fearing
Sarah Fearing is the Assistant Editor at WYDaily. Sarah was born in the state of Maine, grew up along the coast, and attended college at the University of Maine at Orono. Sarah left Maine in October 2015 when she was offered a job at a newspaper in West Point, Va. Courts, crime, public safety and civil rights are among Sarah’s favorite topics to cover. She currently covers those topics in Williamsburg, James City County and York County. Sarah has been recognized by other news organizations, state agencies and civic groups for her coverage of a failing fire-rescue system, an aging agriculture industry and lack of oversight in horse rescue groups. In her free time, Sarah enjoys lazing around with her two cats, Salazar and Ruth, drinking copious amounts of coffee and driving places in her white truck.

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