Thu Jan 27, 2011.
By TRUDI GILFILLIAN Staff Writer pressofAtlanticCity.com
WILDWOOD - At least 700 people enjoyed breakfast aboard Morey's Piers Giant Ferris Wheel on Mariner's Landing Pier last summer, but a plan to add mixed drinks to the menu has met with mixed reviews.
Morey's planner Clark Doran said Thursday that the company's Breakfast in the Sky offerings had been a popular addition to the piers operations and that someone in the company suggested adding brunch drinks such as bloody mary's or mimosas to the menu choices.
"It's something we thought would be nice," Doran said.
Last summer Morey's added a chance to eat breakfast atop the pier's Ferris wheel. This year, the theme park wants to serve liquor, too.
The company took the idea to the Planning Board, but the board had plenty of questions about how the service would work or if it should even be permitted under the regulations guiding amusement rides in the state.
Planning Board Chairman Bud McGrath said Thursday that the board had concerns about serving drinks to anyone while on or before boarding an amusement ride.
He said the board wanted to know if anything like that had been done before, if the company would be adding another bar on the pier and more details about the operation.
McGrath said he also suggested the company could look into getting a special liquor license from the city specifically for the drink service on a temporary basis to see how it works.
Server Courtney Dougherty sets the breakfast table for Fiorucci family of Cape May Court House: Mike, Merideth, and children Drew, 14, and Michaela, 17, as they prepare to have breakfast atop the Giant Wheel last summer. Now Morey's wants to add mimosas to its menu.
Questions about the state law governing alcoholic drinks and amusement rides were also left to interpretation, McGrath said.
In an e-mail, Lisa Ryan, spokeswoman for the state Department of Community Affairs, said Thursday that the Carnival and Amusement Ride rules state that, "The owner of an amusement ride may not permit a person who is perceptibly or apparently under the influence of alcohol or drugs to enter or ride an amusement ride."
Ryan then offered the agency's interpretation of those rules.
"We read that to mean that someone may have had a drink before getting on the ride, but cannot be in any way impaired. So while the rules do not necessarily prohibit the serving of alcohol on a ride, any such service would have to be both limited and policed by the owner," Ryan said in her e-mail.
At Wednesday's City Commission meeting, resident Sandra Richardson said she opposed the drink service because of the possible dangers it presented.
"How can we serve alcohol on the ride," she said, joking that next Morey's may allow people to drink and drive the go-karts.
The company's application has been tabled for now and no date has been set to revisit the idea.
"I don't know if we'll bring it back or not," Doran said.