With Memorial Day and the unofficial beginning of summer approaching, more Idaho families are beginning to make vacation plans, but visitors to McCall should know that things will be a bit different for the resort community's big Fourth of July celebrations.
Facing unruly situations at McCall's popular North Beach and residents complaining about "drunken revelry" for years, the city has now officially banned alcohol from McCall parks between July 1-5. This week's McCall Star-News reports the McCall City Council has adopted the no-booze resolution between midnight Friday, July 1 and 8 a.m. Tuesday, July 5.
The ban syncs with the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation's ban of of alcohol at North Beach on Payette Lake during the holiday weekend. Previous Independence Day celebrations at North Beach have drawn as many as 2,500 people, triggering numerous arrests and citations for rowdy and/or drunken behavior. A total of 27 citations were issued by Idaho State Police for underage drinking over the Fourth of July holiday in 2015, with the youngest offender being a 15-year-old girl. Ten motorists and one boater were also charged with DUI.
"The beer was going down so fast [on Fourth of July], it was kind of the perfect storm," said Valley County Sheriff's Sergeant Kevin Copperi in .July 2015.
McCall officials said they're planning a publicity campaign, particularly focusing on the Boise area, to caution visitors about the new rules.