DORA Permit Application

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The City of Lexington is committed to continual use of the recently acquired DORA (Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area) permit.  The DORA permit establishes a clearly defined zone in Downtown Lexington where open alcoholic beverages may be carried and consumed. Individuals, organizations and businesses are encouraged to consider applying for a permit for the activity or event you envision in Downtown, within the areas where alcohol may be carried and consumed.

The City itself sought and received the umbrella permit from the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control to hold such events, within the established DORA Zone in Downtown.  Organizations/groups that would like to consider holding an event where alcohol can be carried and consumed may apply to the City for an individual event permit.

The DORA Zone is the only area within Lexington where such an event permit may be applied for.  The DORA Zone consists of most (not all) of Downtown Lexington.  An individual applicant must submit, with their application, what specific area of the Zone they would like to hold their event in.

Interested parties may find a DORA Permit Application on the City website under “I Want To – Apply For – DORA Permit Application” or pick one up at the LPD or in the City Manager’s Office.  Applications should be submitted thirty (30) days in advance of the date sought for the event in question.  The applicant may seek assistance with their application in the LPD or City Manager’s Office. 

Applicants for DORA Permit are responsible for the following:

  1. Coordinating with local businesses who may wish to serve alcohol at the event.
  2. Providing clearly visible signs for businesses who are not participating in the DORA event, at the entrance to these businesses.
  3. Establishing a means of determining the age of anyone who may wish to consume alcohol and a means by which to monitor who is permitted to drink.
  4. Each business serving alcohol must have a cup with their name or logo on it in order to participate.
  5. Provide signage and volunteer staffing at perimeter of the DORA Zone to prevent alcohol from being carried outside the Zone.
  6. Payment for all or some of the associated City costs for the event (police presence, street shut-downs barricades, etc.

Consultation with the Lexington Police Department is recommended so that every element of the application is in order before your application is submitted.

All permits will be reviewed by City staff and a recommendation for or against issuance of the permit will be made by the Lexington Police Department.  Provided there are no barriers to issuance of the permit, the City Manager may recommend approval of the permit to City Council.  City Council may then choose or not choose to authorize the permit.

While City staff will do everything possible to expedite an application, review of the application may take some time.  It is recommended that permit application begin at least 3 months prior to the event you are planning.

Please note, that while this is a rigorous process, City staff is committed to assist in making your event a success.  We are here to be a resource, not a barrier to your successful DORA event.  Our first event, the Freedom Food Festival, this past July was a great success and the practices that were followed then provide a clear template for success in the future.

Applicants for a DORA Permit must provide the following:

  1. To receive a copy of your submission, please fill out your email address below and submit.

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