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Old Cody library could become restaurant/brewery

If Park County’s pending sale of the former Cody library goes through, residents could say goodbye to an empty building and hello to a new restaurant and small brewery.

But first, the owners-in-waiting must face some competition for a liquor license.

The county announced in February that the downtown Cody property — located on the northwest corner of Sheridan Avenue and 11th Street — was under contract with a buyer. While the Park County Commission remains mum on the prospective new owner, public records say a group of businessmen hope to make the spot the “Millstone Pizza Company and Brewery.”

An application to the city of Cody for a bar and grill liquor license lays out a plan to convert the old library building into a family-friendly restaurant, sports bar and arcade that would offer pizzas, burgers, sandwiches, crafted beers and entertainment.

The application packet says two Cody men — Rich Petersen and Brad Constantine — intend to buy the property from Park County and have leasee Gary Johnston run the establishment. Johnston owns and operates a similar type of business in California called The Big Cheese Pizza Company and Brewery.

The county has been trying to sell the library building since it became vacant in late 2008.

A hurdle for Millstone Pizza Company and Brewery is that it’s one of two applicants seeking the city of Cody’s only remaining bar and grill liquor license.

Cody resident Leonard Moore hopes to get the license to start up the Pat O’Hara Brewing Co. Moore said in his application that he’s aiming to offer craft beers from a micro-brewery and a full service restaurant in a relaxing atmosphere. The brew pub would be located just off Sheridan Avenue, at 1019 15th Street.

Moore sought a more flexible retail liquor license for Pat O’Hara Brewing Co. last year, but narrowly lost out to another applicant in a hotly contested process.

The Cody City Council will hold a public hearing on the license requests at its June 4 meeting and then choose between Pat O’Hara Brewing Co. and Millstone Pizza Company and Brewery.

Each proposed establishment needs the bar and grill liquor license to move forward on their plans for bar areas.

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6 comments

  • posted by Wyovet

    June 03, 2013 6:46 pm

    What about the children? I'm sure councilman Anderson is concerned about the children again. He pointed this out when Walmart tried to get a liquor license. Now again, there is consideration for a liquor license in a building where there will be children. What about the children?

  • posted by Billy

    June 02, 2013 5:02 pm

    Lets hope that the Cody screw job doesn't live up to its reputation. Leonard Moore has his building ready to go, the other candidate just has a "plan". Maybe Dr. Moore needs to vacation with the Mayor to wrap this up?

    This will be a good'un, git yer popcorn!

  • posted by SuperSixOne

    May 30, 2013 9:07 pm

    Well Cory, as I stated, let's put our State Legislature on notice we need a few more liquor licenses. This law is hindering job growth / creation, as well as limiting tourism and tourist's options on entertainment. I get it, It is way too easy to do the "easy wrong", as opposed to the "hard right" thing to do. Change in WY is always opposed, except when it comes to fiber-optic internet and a million dollar aquadic academy. Don't you agree? We have a beautiful county, yet no place with any "modern" decor to enjoy a meal or an evening cocktail that doesn't take one back to the 1970s. Just think how nice it would be if we could open up an OutBack Steakhouse. Great food, nice family friendly restaurant, a nice bar area to enjoy an adult beverage, job growth/oportunities, and personality.

  • posted by cory

    May 30, 2013 10:07 am

    Super Six One, Certain types of licenses are limited by state law based on population,

  • posted by SuperSixOne

    May 30, 2013 6:11 am

    Why not just award both a liquor license? In a town/county that needs to keep tourism coming, become a bit more modern, and still keep its old west roots, a pair of family friendly eateries and breweries would be much welcomed. Most restaurants in Cody still have a 1970 decor, complete with the stale smell of 1970s smoke embedded in the walls and furniture. Heck, these two new establishments may usher in a period of people actually patronizing an establishment, not looking or smelling like they just came in from the gas, oil or cow fields. A few places in Cody with an actual atmosphere / decor not dating back to the 1970s, will add a bit of class to the city. Most hotels in the city/county still look as they did in the 1970s as well. I say add another liquor license to the city roles, and award both these businesses a license. They can hire off duty city & county law enforcement for security. Two new businesses mean more jobs, and more tourist tax revenue. But then again, Cody City Council is stocked with backward thinkers, and they will fumble this issue, and Cody will remain stuck in the stale 1970s. I’d invite these gentlemen to open their businesses in Powell, but Powell City Council would fumble this too. Sigh…

  • posted by Kody Koyote

    May 28, 2013 4:27 pm

    All they have to do is take the mayor on a boating trip. That will cinch the license.

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