Forest Park’s village council voted unanimously April 25 to approve entertainment licenses for Pioneer Tap, 7445 Randolph St., and Shortstop Lounge, 7425 Madison St., after owner Lynn Sorice submitted more detailed applications. 

The council was scheduled to vote on both licenses during its April 11 meeting. But several commissioners raised concerns that the application was too broad, listing general time spans instead of specific dates and not specifying whether they would be playing music using a laptop or hiring a DJ. Instead of rejecting the applications, the council postponed the vote to give Sorice an opportunity to address their concerns.

Forest Park municipal code requires all liquor license holders to apply for entertainment license if they want to hold any kind of event. The requirement was rarely enforced until last year. 

The Pioneer Tap at 7445 Randolph St. in Forest Park. File photo

During the April 11 meeting, several commissioners raised concerns about Pioneer Tap’s and Shortstop’s applications. With the former, they were concerned that the bar wanted to be able to play music every day between 4 p.m. and 11 p.m., which commissioners felt wasn’t specific enough. And, with both bars, the commissioners were worried about the fact that they would either “self-DJ” or hire a professional DJ without specifying which one would be the case on what day. 

The council previously indicated that they wouldn’t approve applications for anything more than a month ahead of time, so both applications only covered May. 

The council generally agreed that “self Djing” – playing the music from a laptop or another device – was different from hiring a live DJ. While they weren’t interested in regulating the former, they wanted oversight over the latter.

In the updated applications, Sorice specified the exact dates and times the music would be playing, and specified that they would be using laptops. With Pioneer Tap, she set exact times for each day of the week, so that the music would start playing at 7 p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 6 p.m. on Thursdays, 5 p.m. on Fridays and 3 p.m. on the weekends.  The current regulations require all music to stop playing by 11 p.m., and the application indicates that they would stop playing music at 10:45 p.m. 

That satisfied the council, and the commissioners approved both applications without discussion.