Vancouver bars can be open, can’t serve beer, for Olympic gold medal game

Puck Daddy

Vancouverites aren't all that different from the rest of their fellow Canadians. They like their hockey, they like their beer, and they find the two go very well together.

Unfortunately, on Sunday, when Canada and Sweden face off for Olympic gold in men's hockey, anyone watching the game at a bar or pub will have to do so lightly influenced by a different beverage. Ginger ale. Milk. Water. Anything but beer.

While the B.C government showed a little flexibility this week, allowing pubs and bars to remain open for the gold medal game, which airs at 4 a.m. local time, those establishments will still be forbidden from serving their primary function.

And by their primary function, I of course mean alcohol. The province was unwilling to go all the way with their concessions, as last call will remain 2am, two hours before puck drop.

Justice minister Suzanne Anton explains, from the Vancouver Sun:

"Twenty-four-hour liquor is problematic. We haven't permitted that in the past so we're not going to make that change now," Anton said.

Asked if fans will be happy with a beer-free final, Anton suggested drinks won't be the big draw.

"I think what's going to make everyone happy is when Canada wins the gold on Sunday morning."

Unless they don't, in which case, everyone is going to want to get drunk. And now they can't. Thanks for nothing.

No one ever expected Vancouver to match the party they threw during the men's hockey gold medal game back in 2010. That was pretty much impossible. After all, that game was in their own backyard.

But that's no excuse for not even trying. This time around, the party is going to be laaaaame.

Watchers in Ottawa will also have to go dry thanks to similar liquor laws, but they aren't trying to follow up one of the greatest parties in the history of Canada. Plus Ottawa is historically lame. They're Canada's capital because we didn't want to put all our politicians in a cool city.

Meanwhile, Toronto has been cleared to party hard. In case the very existence of Rob Ford hadn't already underscored that Toronto City Council plays by its own rules and loves to get down, we got yet another example when they approved a motion allowing for early alcohol sales.

That motion passed 37-4. The only real disagreement on the floor came from the aforementioned mayor, who argued nightclubs should be allowed to be open and serving alcohol too, because of course he did.

“You’re taking out nightclubs?" Mayor Ford asked. "If everyone is allowed, which I support, to open up at 7, what makes a nightclub any different from a café?”

Best. Mayor. Ever.

As a Vancouverite, I bristle whenever someone suggests Toronto is superior, but in this case, it's a clear win for Canada's biggest city.

- - - - - - -

Harrison Mooney is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

What to Read Next