Civic Center Upgrades; Policy Change to be Discussed - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Civic Center Upgrades; Policy Change to be Discussed

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SALISBURY, Md. - Leaders in Wicomico County have set money aside to make necessary upgrades and improvements to the Wicomico Youth and Civic Center in hopes of keeping the arena a viable option for events coming to the Eastern Shore. 

As part of Wicomico County Executive Bob Culver Capital Improvement Plan, there is over $3 million in state and county money for cosmetic upgrades to the Youth and Civic Center.  They include upgrades both outside and inside the building, including changing the arena seating and tile flooring.  Culver believes the changes will make the over 34 year old building feel more modern and help land more acts and events.

WBOC also asked the county executive about alcohol sales at the civic center.  When the land was originally donated to the county in 1947 by S. Franklin Woodcock, it was done so with the understanding that alcohol would never be sold on the land or in whatever structure was built on the land.  Past attempts in Wicomico County to change that understanding have failed.  Many push back against the idea of alcohol sales saying they like the way the Civic Center is without alcohol.  Others invoke their religious beliefs against alcohol consumption when it comes to a possible change at the civic center.  But Culver wants the idea of serving alcohol at the civic center at least discussed.

"It's something that's on the table.  I am not opposed to it.  I want to make sure that the family of Mr. Woodcock agrees," Culver told WBOC.

WBOC also spoke with Ed Urban, former Chairman of the Civic Center and current member of the Civic Center's Advisory Board.  Urban said he also tried to change the alcohol policy at the civic center about ten years ago but said he was never able to gain enough political support to bring the idea to a vote at the county council.  Urban said with Culver behind the idea, there will at least be some open dialog on the idea of alcohol at the civic center.

Culver's Capital Improvement Plan, which includes the money for upgrades at the civic center, must still be approved by the Wicomico County Council.

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