Downtown Social District
Kalamazoo is now home to the Downtown Social District and within it the Central Commons Refreshment Area. You can grab a drink from a participating business and enjoy it while you stroll and shop through downtown.
How It Works
Follow these simple rules and you’re well on your way to enjoying the Social District safely and in accordance with state and local laws.
Grab a Drink
All alcoholic beverages must be served in a designated Central Commons Refreshment Area container and purchased from one of our approved, participating businesses within the Social District.
To find the most up-to-date list of participating businesses, take a look at the map below. And when you’re downtown, be on the lookout! Participating businesses will display window decals, and QR codes posted throughout the district will point you to more information.
Watch the Clock
The Central Commons Refreshment Area operates seven days a week:
Sunday – Thursday: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Friday & Saturday: 10 a.m. – 12 a.m.
Stay in Bounds
Leaving the refreshment area with an alcoholic beverage is against both local and state law. Check the map below to make sure you’re familiar with the boundaries and look for signs throughout the district.
You may not take drinks served at one location into another bar or restaurant, or onto their patio space.
Some non-alcohol serving businesses located within the boundary may choose to allow you to enter their establishment with drinks – check for signage or ask if you’re uncertain.
Please treat others and businesses within our community with respect, and drink responsibly. All State of Michigan and City of Kalamazoo laws apply, including those prohibiting public intoxication, impaired driving, and serving alcohol to minors.
Sip and enjoy
Last but not least… have fun!
The social district provides participating business with an exciting new way to serve downtown Kalamazoo visitors, who can now safely enjoy drinks outdoors—during the pandemic and beyond.
If you’re an eligible business and interested in participating, follow these steps:
- Check if your business is within the Central Commons Refreshment Area.
- Complete page 1 of the Social District Permit Application.
- Send the application to the Kalamazoo Downtown Partnership team – we’ll take care of submitting to the City for completion.
- Submit the completed application and the Local Government Unit Approval For Social District Permit to MLCC.
- Once you receive notice back from MLCC, let the Partnership team know and we’ll arrange to deliver Central Commons Refreshment Area materials including cups, signage, and decals.