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Vote Allows Cold Beer To Be Sold In Oxford Stores

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(Oxford, MS) Cold beer sales are heading to Oxford, Miss.

The Lafayette County city's board of aldermen voted to allow convenience stores and grocery stores to sell cold beer seven days a week.

It's a decision a lot of people are taking warmly in the city that's home to Ole Miss.

"Personally I was kind of glad. Because it was just showing that Mississippi is now moving up into the new age. That we finally catching up with times," said De'Metrius Woods, manager of Ward's Short Stop in Oxford.

The convenience store is just a couple of miles from the Ole Miss campus and sells a lot of beer.

Problem is, like all the other convenience stores, it's warm beer.

So Woods is excited the city will now allow the sale of cold beer and beverages called "light" wine.

Woods isn't alone on that opinion.

Bennie Price works on the Ole Miss campus at says the affirmative vote is long overdue.

"I think it's great. Because for a long time I know people had to travel to other counties to get cold beer. Especially on Sunday, like when you want to watch the game."

But it also means store owners will have to invest thousands of dollars to install new coolers, so they can get the brew off the floor and into the cold.

Woods said he believes it makes good business sense to make the upgrades.

"If we don't sell cold beer and the guy down the road do, who do you think gonna get that business."

Since a lot of Oxford's restaurants already sell cold beer and wine, the measure's main impact is on convenience and grocery stores, which also be allowed to sell cold beer on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Oxford Mayor George Patterson doesn't think the "cold" beer measure is a big deal, "The sky's not going to fall because we're selling cold beer..."

He said he's not expecting any problems for the city and recognizes a lot of students at Ole Miss do enjoy drinking beer.

"And there are definitely some issues there with consumption and late night activity, there's no doubt about it. But I just don't know that it affects the character of our town to sell cold beer. I don't think it does."

Stores will have to wait 30-days before selling "cold" beer.

The vote has no impact on current alcohol sales and consumption in Lafayette County outside the Oxford city limits.