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Ely, Counselor at Law
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Can I serve (free of charge) alcohol at a private gathering

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Can I serve (free of charge) alcohol at a private gathering on my private property in Barren County KY (a moist county)?
Hello friend. My name is XXXXX XXXXX welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: (1) this is general information only, not legal advice, and, (2) there may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies.

On this website, I do not always get to give good news, and I am afraid that this is one of these times.

Since Barren County is a dry county, consumption of liquor is not allowed, with the exception of Green Palace Meadery and Mattingly Farm Winery as well as a few restaurants. The County has voted to be a moist county under KRS 242.185(6), meaning with few exceptions, no alcohol for consumption is allowed and prohibition is in effect (literally, that word is used).

As such, no alcohol is permitted to be served, even if privately at no charge.

Please note: I aim to give you genuine information and not necessarily to tell you only what you wish to hear. Please, rate me on the quality of my information and do not punish me for my honesty. I understand that hearing things less than optimal is not easy, and I empathize.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Does the below section of KY code permit adults attending the event (my daughter's wedding) to bring their own alcoholic beverages?



1. Personal Use.

The legislature in enacting this section did not intend to

prohibit a person from carrying into dry territory alcoholic

beverages for his personal use. Commonwealth v. Trousdale, 297

Ky. 724, 181 S.W.2d 254, 1944 Ky. LEXIS 803 (Ky. 1944).



Ron xxxx


You are citing a case from 69 years ago. Case law is not law (the word is a misnomer), but is more suggestive in nature than often thought. It is simply a "guide" for the Court to make a decision. One may still be charged with possession, and brought to Court, and then would have to argue that (old) case in Court, which may not even be successful (the current court may choose not to follow it).

Ergo, I would not put too much stock into this. If your county is dry (or moist, with prohibition of possession), then the statutory code controls, not case law.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thanks. I've consulted the judge in the area. Their opinion was different than yours.


Thank you for your follow up. Well, this is an subjective matter. Of course, whether you wish to risk an investigation by the authorities is your decision. It would be a good idea to have anyone back up their opinion with statutory law before making a decision as to which way to go. Best of luck.