RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Raleigh’s first social district is officially open.
From large groups of people walking around with drinks to people sipping while walking a dog, people were out and about on night one of “sip n’ stroll.”
It was Drew Beck’s first time ordering an Old Fashioned to go. He originally planned on cooking dinner at home, instead, he took advantage of the new social district.
“I don’t know that I’d necessarily be walking around right now for no reason honestly, it’s a chance to kind of like have a drink, and walk around, pop in and see people, see places,” Beck said.
The area, officially called Sip n’ Stroll Downtown, is around Fayetteville Street, Nash and Moore Squares, and Red Hat Amphitheater. People can only walk around with cups from participating businesses.
Katie Merritt came to celebrate her birthday Monday, having dinner and making a few stops along the way.
“It’s a nice place to walk around with a drink, and go to stores, and go to shops, it seems really nice,” Merritt said.
Nearly 50 businesses have signs in windows saying they sell to-go drinks. Deco Raleigh is one of another 20 businesses that don’t sell alcohol but have signs in windows saying they allow Sip ‘N Stroll drinks in.
The store’s Senior Sales Associate James Holmes grew up in Raleigh and said he never imagined an open container area in the city. He thinks it will do great things for the store’s business.
“I think people will just be more excited, we have a very whimsical shop, so I feel like a drink can only make someone happier to see locally made stuff,” Holmes said.
The district runs seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Click here for a complete guide to the social district.