NORTH ATTLEBORO — Soon there will be no need to wait for a bartender to pour your beer or wine at North Bowl Lanes; you can do it yourself using one of the 12 self-serve taps. The board of selectmen approved a request by owner Ed Kinsley to install iPourIt systems to serve specifically beer and wine. The town will be the third in Massachusetts to install this self-service for alcohol.
Kinsley first saw self-serve beer in California and thought it would be a good addition to his bowling alley. He proposed this system to the board a few months, asking them to modify his liquor license. Kinsley said the system would help the bowling alley during busy times and off-peak hours alike.
“In North Bowl there are a lot of times where there’s not enough business volume to justify having a bartender so we don’t serve alcohol during those times, this way we would be able to accommodate customers,” Kinsley said.
“On Fridays and Saturdays when we’re very busy it would help take the load off the bartenders because there’s physically limited space to the bar and you can’t keep adding people since they would have no place to work.”
Kinsley’s presentation outlined the steps from when the customer is handed a radio-frequency identification (RFID) bracelet that would allow them to pour any combination of 32 ounces of beer and 12 ounces of wine. The selection of taps will allow customers to try new beverages in small amounts and paying for the selected quantities.
Selectmen questioned Kinsley about the implementation of the self-serve taps, specifically about staff member training and the ease of potential misuse of the RFID bands.
After answering all the questions from the selectmen, the town administrator and, indirectly ,the police chief, Kinsley’s request was approved. The approval included instructions to properly monitor the self-serve taps with cameras, train all employees handing out RFID bracelets or interacting with the tap system to undergo alcohol awareness training, and an addition of a non-removable bracelet to make sure no customers exceeded their limit.