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This ordinance prohibits, and establishes

penalties for, any person hosting an event or

gathering where alcohol is present and pos-

sessed or consumed by persons under twen-

ty-one (21) years of age.

Be it enacted by the Wadena City Council,

as follows:

Subd. 1. Purpose and Findings. The Wad-

ena City Council intends to discourage un-

derage possession and consumption of alco-

hol, even if done within the confines of a pri-

vate residence, and intends to hold persons

criminally responsible who host events or

gatherings where persons under 21 years of

age possess or consume alcohol regardless

of whether the person hosting the event or

gathering supplied the alcohol. The Wadena

City Council finds that:

(a) Events and gatherings held on private

or public property where alcohol is pos-

sessed or consumed by persons under the

age of twenty-one are harmful to those per-

sons and constitute a potential threat to

public health requiring prevention or abate-


(b) Prohibiting underage consumption acts

to protect underage persons, as well as the

general public, from injuries related to alco-

hol consumption, such as alcohol overdose

or alcohol-related traffic collisions.

(c) Alcohol is an addictive drug which, if

used irresponsibly, could have drastic effects

on those who use it as well as those who are

affected by the actions of an irresponsible


(d) Often, events or gatherings involving

underage possession and consumption oc-

cur outside the presence of parents. Howev-

er, there are times when the parent is

present and, condones the activity, and in

some circumstances provides the alcohol.

(e) Even though giving or furnishing alco-

hol to an underage person is a crime, it is dif-

ficult to prove, and an ordinance is neces-

sary to help further combat underage con-


(f) A deterrent effect will be created by

holding a person criminally responsible for

hosting an event or gathering where under-

age possession or consumption occurs.

(g) There are times when a legal adult or

responsible party is under 21 and is/are

present, and condone the activity and in

some circumstances provide the alcohol.

Subd. 2. Authority. This ordinance is en-

acted pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 412.221 sub-

division 32.

Subd. 3. Definitions. For purposes of this

ordinance, the following terms have the fol-

lowing meanings:

(a) Alcohol. "Alcohol" means ethyl alcohol,

hydrated oxide of ethyl, or spirits of wine,

whiskey, rum, brandy, gin, or any other dis-

tilled spirits including dilutions and mixtures

thereof from whatever source or by whatever

process produced.

(b) Alcoholic beverage. "Alcohol beverage"

means alcohol, spirits, liquor, wine, beer,

and every liquid or solid containing alcohol,

spirits, wine, or beer, and which contains

one-half of one percent or more of alcohol by

volume, and which is fit for beverage purpos-

es either alone or when diluted, mixed, or

combined with other substances.

(c) Event or gathering. "Event or gather-

ing" means any group of three or more per-

sons who have assembled or gathered to-

gether for a social occasion or other activity.

(d) Host. "Host" means to aid, conduct, al-

low, entertain, organize, supervise, control,

or permit a gathering or event.

(e) Parent. "Parent" means any person

having legal custody of a juvenile. a. As nat-

ural, adoptive parent, or step-parent.

b. As a legal guardian, or c. As a person to

whom legal custody has been given by order

of the court.

(f) Person. "Person" means any individual,

partnership, co-partnership, corporation, or

any association of one or more individuals.

(g) Residence or Premises. "Residence" or

"premises" means any home, yard, field,

land, apartment, condominium, hotel or mo-

tel room, or other dwelling unit, or a hall or

meeting room, park, or any other place of as-

sembly, public or private, whether occupied

on a temporary or permanent basis whether

occupied as a dwelling or specifically for a

party or other social function, and whether

owned, leased, rented, or used with or with-

out permission or compensation.

(h) Underage Person. "Underage person"

is any individual under twenty-one (21) years

of age.

Subd. 4. Prohibited Acts.

(a) It is unlawful for any person(s) to:

(1) Host or allow an event or gathering;

(2) At any residence, premises, or on any

other private or public property;

(3) Where alcohol or alcoholic beverages

are present;

(4) When the person knows or reasonably

should know that an underage person will or


(i) Consume any alcohol or alcoholic bev-

erage; or

(ii) Possess any alcohol or alcoholic bever-

age with the intent to consume it; and

(iii) The person fails to take reasonable

steps to prevent possession or consumption

by the underage person(s).

(b) A person is criminally responsible for

violating Subdivision 4(a) above if the person

intentionally aids, advises, hires, counsels,

or conspires with or otherwise procures an-

other to commit the prohibited act.

(c) A person who hosts an event or gather-

ing does not have to be present at the event

or gathering to be criminally responsible.

Subd. 5. Exceptions.

(a) This ordinance does not apply to con-

duct solely between an underage person and

his or her parents while present in the par-

ent's household.

(b) This ordinance does not apply to legal-

ly protected religious observances.

(c) This ordinance does not apply to retail

intoxicating liquor or 3.2 percent malt liquor

licenses, municipal liquor stores, or bottle

club permit holders who are regulated by

Minn. Stat. §340A.503 Subd. l(a) (1).

(d) This ordinance does not apply to situa-

tions where underage persons are lawfully in

possession of alcohol or alcoholic beverages

during the course and scope of employment.

(e) This chapter does not apply to enforce-

ment activities supervised by a law enforce-

ment agency.

Subd. 6. Enforcement. This ordinance can

be enforced by any licensed police officer in

the City of Wadena.

Subd. 7. Severability. If any section, sub-

section, sentence, clause, phrase, word, or

other portion of this ordinance is, for any rea-

son, held to be unconstitutional or invalid, in

whole, or in part, by any court or competent

jurisdiction, such portion shall be deemed

severable, and such unconstitutionality or in-

validity shall not affect the validity of the re-

maining portions of this law, which remaining

portions shall continue in full force and ef-


Subd. 8. Penalty. Violation of Subdivision

4 is a misdemeanor.

Subd. 9. Effective Date. This ordinance

shall take effect thirty (30) days following its

final passage and adoption.

ADOPTED by the City Council of the City

of Wadena, Minnesota on the 13th day of

September, 2011, by the following vote:

YES: Wolden, Baymler, Pierce, Niles,


NO: None



Wayne Wolden, Mayor


Bradley A. Swenson, City Administrator

118555-1322000 9/24/11