More Amplified Music for Westover Beer Garden?

by ARLnow.com November 13, 2012 at 12:00 pm 5,958 32 Comments

The Arlington County Board is scheduled to consider an expansion of amplified music at the Westover Market beer garden (5863 Washington Blvd).

In June, the beer garden was granted a permit to allow amplified outdoor music on Saturday nights. In response to the market’s request to expand amplified music to three nights per week, county staff is recommending the County Board meet the business half way and grant a permit to allow amplified music two nights per week — on Fridays and Saturdays.

Only one neighbor has complained to the county about the amplified music, according to the staff report.

“No formal complaints have been made to the Zoning or Code Enforcement Offices since amplified entertainment was started one night per week in June 2012,” staff noted. “Staff has received informal complaints and concerns by one neighborhood resident. However, the applicant has been found upon investigation by staff to be compliant with the Noise Ordinance, and compliant with all conditions of approval.”

Westover Market also requested permission to operate the beer garden year-round, but staff concluded that such a move would require a change in the Zoning Ordinance. The ordinance requires all outdoor cafes in the county to be “seasonal” in nature — typically open from April to November and closed in the winter.

The Board is expected to consider the amplified music request at its meeting this coming Saturday, Nov. 17.

  • dallynd

    Makes sense, though why not grant three nights if they’ve been fully compliant and had only one complaint from one person. Good for the neighborhood, good for business, especially if they have to close up during the winter.

    • YTK

      Notice how COMPLAINT and COMPLIANT are just one letter apart. Wonders will never cease

  • MM

    Hard to imagine why anyone would complain. I live 300 feet away and can’t hear anything. Hell, you can barely hear the music from Lost Dog across the street. Also, now that winter is basically a thing of the past, it makes a lot of sense to let the beer garden stay open year round…just put up some overhead heaters and I guarantee folks will come out for football/basketball games in Dec/Jan/Feb/March.

    • BigDODo

      Wait. Where did Winter go? Are you sniffing Al Gores behind again? I will sit and laught when snowpocalypse 2 hits. You know everything has to have a sequel right!!!

      • YTK

        Mayhaps MM meant “summer”

      • MM

        Checkmate, Captain Science. You really got me on that one!

  • Good music

    Give them the three nights they ask for. It is ridiculous pandering to try and meet them half way. Quit being obnoxious Arlington County Staff. This is a good business, that has complied with all the stupid things you have made them do to appease a few grizzly neighbors.

    • TV Exec

      ” grizzly neighbors.”

      Who leaked the name of our mid-season replacement show ??

    • KathyinArlington

      The reason — “such a move would require a change in the Zoning Ordinance. The ordinance requires all outdoor cafes in the county to be “seasonal” in nature — typically open from April to November and closed in the winter.” An ordinance change will affect all outdoor cafes. Is this a good thing to apply to all outdoor cafes? I, myself, don’t know.

  • TJLinBallston

    Westover is such a wild and crazy part of town! How will they keep the hordes of rabble-rousers away with this sudden burst of liberality?! The extra music is nothing but a license to thrill!

    • YTK

      Yes I know– I’m still trying to quiet my nerves on that one.

    • Tabby_TwoTone

      I once got extra meat in my hoagie at the Westover Food Mart deli.

      • Dr Seuss


  • Huh?

    Only one complaint but they won’t grant the request for 3 nights only 2? Why is ArlCo being so petty?

    • YTK

      Becuz Arl County is petty

      • DCBuff

        Just don’t expect them to approve Tom Petty.

    • drax

      They are negotiating with residents. That’s not petty, that’s compromise.

  • Gen Lee

    2 blocks from my house. Just wonderful.

  • YTK

    Oohm Pah Pah on Washington Boulevard??!! Yes!!!!

    • Mick

      Grant them 7 nights/week if they promise to close up that dump of a grocery store

      • Wow&Flutter

        You must not like beer very much!

        • Mick

          Guess not. I tried shopping for groceries there many times, but selection became poorer and poorer as customers went elsewhere.

          Hope the beer wall and beer garten pays the bills for them.

          Been 2 years since I been there. Maybe it’s better.

  • Rich

    Devin and fam are good folks, and comply with all the city ordinances. Not to mention bringing the Westover Market back to life over better part of the past decade by attracting new clientele with their carefully curated wall of beer.

    I for one hope that this works out.

  • JimPb

    Year-round Ok.

    Amplified sound — No. No need in the garden’s small space, and it could be a real risk of bothering neighbors — and those who are rightfully concerned to protect their hearing from loud noise, especially unnecessary loud noise.

    • Quoth the Raven

      But obviously, since they have amplified sound now, and only one person has complained, it in fact is NOT a “real risk” of bothering anyone.

      If you want to protect your hearing, don’t sit next to the speakers. And who are you to say what is or is not “unnecessary loud noise”??

    • YTK

      Nearest Neighbor is the Post Office and Ayer’s…….

    • Cheryl

      there have been no complaints with the exception of one neighbor who refuses to admit that they were overuled and cannot let go of the issue. we walk our dogs all the time on their street and you can NEVER hear any music even on nights when there is amplification. WBG has been compliant and the venue is enjoyed by everyone.

  • FedUp

    The ordinance regarding outdoor seating to be closed for three months needs to be changed! Arlington has changed, the climate is changing, but restrictive ordinances such as this one have stagnated. Why not be able to sit outside when the weather is warm enough in the winter? Leave it up to the businesses if and when to open up their outdoor seating!

    • drax

      See comment above – it’s about the zoning law.

  • CA

    Is there a strong demand for amplified music at the beer garden? Do a lot more people show up when its amplified?

  • Cheryl

    When considering “amplified” music, we are not talking about pounding bass or loud. Amplification of an instrument is necessary to simply hear it being playing 10 feet away. It also includes a microphone in which to sing. You know how annoying it is to be in a crowd when someone speaks with no microphone and you cant hear them at all??? That is what is being proposed. Nothing beyond the decible level allowed, simply amplification so that you can hear the musicians while within the venue. This is really a non issue or should be a non issue.

  • Ted

    No Minorities Allowed in Westover! Per Commonwealth Attorney and Westover Resident Theo Stamos and the Arlington Police Department.


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