Tybee Island bans open-air drinking on two weekends in April

1:21 p.m Monday, Feb. 26, 2018 Atlanta Life
Early spring break crowds in Panama City Beach, Fla., are far smaller than in past years, locals say. The Gulf Coast city put in place new restrictions on alcohol and stepped up law enforcement after troubles during college spring break . MATT KEMPNER / AJC

If you plan on enjoying some beach time on Tybee Island in April, take note.

For the second year in a row, the Tybee Island City Council has banned open drinking and “amplified” music during a part of the year when the beaches are crowded with spring break and vacation revelers.

The ban is in effect for the weekends of April 13 through April 15 and April 20 through April 22 and covers drinking on beaches, sidewalks, parking lots and other public spaces.

Mayor Jason Buelterman said the April 21 weekend is also when the city expects people to come for what is billed as Orange Crush weekend, an event largely publicized through social media and word-of-mouth.

That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a little libation, you just won’t be able to drink alcohol openly on the beach and public spaces.

“It’s mainly a safety issue,” he said. “Usually when you have large crowds of college students, alcohol and no supervision, it’s a recipe for problems.”

Buelterman said officials never know for sure when the Orange Crush weekend is happening unless they monitor social media. According to a Facebook page for “Orange Crush 2K18, the event will be held from April 19 through April 22 in Savannah. It’s not clear if that is the same event in Tybee.

He said when the ban was put into effect last year, the crowds were noticeably better behaved.