Dry Door County Town Set To Vote On Ending Decades-Old Prohibition

1 In 3 Ephraim Residents Signed Petition, Circulators Say

Dave (CC-BY-NC-ND)

A Door County tourist hot spot may finally allow beer and wine to be sold at restaurants and inns.

The village of Ephraim is thought to be the only dry spot in the state of Wisconsin.

Local business owner Hugh Mulliken circulated a petition asking for the issue to be put to a vote in a referendum. He explained that Wisconsin law dictates 15 percent of local residents must ask for the vote. There are only 300 permanent residents of Ephraim.

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“In this case, it was 30, the low 30s, I believe. And we submitted over 100 and actually subsequent to that we received more,” said Mulliken. “So, the majority of people had actually signed up on the petition for the village.”

The issue will go to a vote in April. Ephraim voters rejected beer and alcohol sales twice before, once just before prohibition ended in the 1930s and again in 1992. Mulliken said he thinks attitudes have changed as people want the ability to drink closer to home rather than risk driving to another town and potentially get a DUI.