Retail liquor sales are taking a holiday

December 22, 2017 GMT

CHARLESTON — Those planning to purchase liquor from retail outlets for Christmas this year should plan well ahead of the holiday weekend, or last-minute shoppers will find themselves empty handed.

This year, Christmas Eve falls on a Sunday and Christmas follows on Monday. No liquor sales will be permitted either day, according to a press release from the West Virginia Alcohol Beverage Administration in Charleston.

Per state law, W.Va. Code 60-3A-18, a retail liquor store may not sell liquor on Christmas Day. Also, liquor may not be sold on Sundays.

Those wishing to ring in 2018 also will be affected by the statute because New Year’s Eve falls on a Sunday. Again, no retail liquor sales are permitted at all on Sundays, according to the release.

“Revelers will not be able to purchase liquor from stores at the last minute on either holiday, but wine, beer and champagne may be purchased after 1 p.m. on Sundays,” the release stated. “Additionally, restaurants, bars and private clubs will be able to sell liquor on their premises.”

The West Virginia Alcohol Beverage Administration also offered tips to ensure a joyous and safe holiday season: n Don’t drink and drive. Have a designated driver, or use public transportation or other ride-sharing apps.

• Heed alcohol warning labels for prescription medication.

• Do not over-consume, and be aware of possible negative consequences from drinking too much. This could include accidents, assaults, fires, falls and alcohol poisoning.

• Do not drink alcohol on an empty stomach.

• If you are sick, depressed or taking medication, you should not drink alcohol.

Those hosting a gathering where alcohol will be served are encouraged to provide non-alcoholic beverages and food, cease alcohol service at least one hour or more before your party ends, avoid common source access to beverages like a keg or unattended bar and provide a responsible server and do not over-serve.