Yukon Liquor Corp. shuts off the taps at two bars

Two Whitehorse bars are nursing a pretty bad hangover from the Sourdough Rendezvous.

Two Whitehorse bars are nursing a pretty bad hangover from the Sourdough Rendezvous.

The Yukon Liquor Corporation has slapped the both Jarvis Street Saloon and the Roadhouse with a suspension of their liquor licences for some salacious Rendezvous shenanigans related to erotic entertainment.

Both bars were caught violating Tab 11 of the Yukon Liquor Board’s policy manual, which regulates exotic dancers.

The vice-president of the Yukon Liquor Corporation, Terry Grabowski, wouldn’t go into details about what exactly the violations were, and neither bar could be reached for comment.

Tab 11 of the policy manual prohibits things like table dances, lap dances, touching, the use of animals, props or devices with a sexual connotation, real or simulated acts of violence or the sharing of food between the audience and dancers.

The dancers also have to cover up before, between, and after performances while in the bar.

The Roadhouse, which did not try to appeal the suspension, was also caught violating section 14(1) of the liquor regulations, which prohibits patrons from being in the bar after business hours no matter what they’re wearing.

Both bars were also found to be in violation of section 33(1) which makes the permit holders responsible for ensuring that the entertainment isn’t riotous, disorderly, offensive or disturbing to their neighbours.

The problems at the Roadhouse happened on Feb 23, the same day it was hit with the suspension.

The incident at the Jarvis Street Saloon happened on Feb 17, but it wasn’t served with a suspension until Feb. 28.

But while the Roadhouse, which gets its licence back today, decided to accept the suspension, the Jarvis Street Saloon is appealing its three-day suspension to the president of the liquor corporation.

The liquor board now will hold a hearing where the bar will be able to argue its case.

There are several possible outcomes, said Grabowski.

“The liquor board may decide that the suspension be continued, or that it be canceled, or they can increase days, or they can minimize it,” he said. “Ultimately it’s the board that makes that decision.”

It’s not “entirely common” for the board to issue suspensions, and it’s not the preferred option, said Grabowski.

“The liquor corporation definitely strives for a positive working relationship with the licensees in the Yukon through a combination of training we offer the bars, education, dialogue, communication, inspections by both members of the RCMP and liquor inspectors and then through enforcement as well,” he said.

The Yukon Liquor Corporation doesn’t have the power to fine the business or shut it down. It only has jurisdiction over the sale of alcohol.

“When liquor licences are suspended, it only pertains to the actual licence,” said Grabowski. “It’s not that the liquor corporation has shut down or closed down a premise, we don’t have the legislative authority to do that.

“That’s an actual business decision on whether or not they want to remain open and we certainly encourage licensees to remain open during a liquor licence suspension for the sale of food and non-alcoholic drinks.”

Contact Josh Kerr at

joshk@yukon-news.com