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Downtown Lenoir Social District

Downtown Social District

What is a Social District?

Social districts are areas where people can walk with open, to-go containers of alcoholic beverages in a contiguous area. A social district may include both indoor and outdoor areas of businesses within the defined district during the days and hours established for the social district.

Social District Hours:
Wednesday – Saturday 12pm-10pm

How does the Social District Work in Downtown Lenoir?

The Downtown Lenoir Social District will allow alcoholic beverages to be consumed within district boundaries Wednesday – Saturday 12pm – 10pm. Boundaries for the Social District will be clearly marked with sidewalk signage at the entrance and exit areas of the District.

No alcoholic beverages are to be taken inside public buildings, churches, or non-participating businesses within the parameters of the district.

Visitors to the district are not allowed to bring and consume their own alcoholic beverages (no BYOB). Any alcoholic beverages consumed in the social district must be consumed from the required social district container. A person cannot pour their wine, beer or liquor into a solo cup or any type of container other than the one meeting all the requirements for social districts and sold by a participating ABC permitted business.

All alcoholic beverages must be purchased from establishments located within or contiguous to the district (in specially labeled cups) and must be consumed within the District.

A person is required to dispose of any alcoholic beverage in the person’s possession prior to exiting the social district or entering a vehicle. They may ONLY take their alcoholic drink into the establishment where they bought it or a participating business that does not sell alcohol.


How Would a Social District Be Enforced in Downtown Lenoir?

ABC permitted establishments are required to ensure they meet all legal requirements for carding and limiting consumption of alcoholic beverages. The City of Lenoir will also follow all guidelines in accordance with NC General Statute 18B-904.1 and the NC ABC Commission. Lenoir Police Department will enforce the restrictions of the Downtown Lenoir Social District.

How Do Downtown Businesses Operate in a Social District?

Businesses can choose to be included in the District, or can opt out if they desire. Signage will be displayed in businesses participating in the District to inform visitors that they are allowed to bring alcoholic beverages inside.

Businesses that do not serve alcohol that want to be included in the Social District may permit people to enter their establishment with an alcoholic beverage in an approved container.

Businesses that do NOT want to participate in the District should display signage that reads, “Please No Beverages”. Signage for those both participating and non-participating businesses will be provided by the City of Lenoir for display at their entrance.


To Opt-In as a participating business, please fill out and submit this FORM.

Blue Sign: This is an ABC permitted business that can sell into the Social District

Green Sign: This is a Retailer that allows Social District beverages into their business

Red Sign: This is a Retailer that does NOT allow Social District beverages into their business

ABC Permitted Businesses:

Social District Registration Permit

Special Temporary Festival Social District Registration Permit

Businesses serving alcoholic beverages to be taken outside of their establishment into the Social District must meet the following requirements:

  • Beverage container – must display the Lenoir Downtown Social District logo, as well as the business/establishment from which the alcoholic beverage was purchased.
  • Beverage container is not made of glass.
  • Beverage container displays “Drink Responsibly-Be 21” in font no smaller than 12-point.
  • Container cannot hold more than 16 ounces.
  • Container must have a time & date stamp of when the beverage was purchased.