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First legal alcohol sales occur in Hartselle

Lauren Estes, Hartselle Enquirer

The first legal alcohol sale took place just before 10 a.m. at the Hartselle Exxon Gas Station at the corner of Highway 31 and Highway 36 on Friday morning.

Chris Orr was the first person to legally purchase beer in the city.

Hartselle was the largest dry city within the State of Alabama until the municipality voted to go wet in Nov. of 2016.

Former Hartselle Fire Chief Rickey Joe Smith has lived in Hartselle off and on for 59 years and said he has supported Hartselle being wet since they first voted. He waited patiently for his turn in line to purchase a case of alcohol.

“I’ve supported it since it came up,” Smith said. “I’m not ashamed to admit that. The city needs more revenue and this is a way to do that. If you look around there is a big circle around Hartselle and all those cities are wet. I just hope that this new revenue goes in the right places.”

Although Smith does support the sale of alcohol, he doesn’t think it will dramatically change the structure of Hartselle.

“I don’t foresee beer stores popping up on every corner because of the strict regulations, which is a good thing,” Smith said. “This is only the beginning of this though.”