‘It’s exciting!’: The Junction, Wixom’s social district, officially open

A new social district that connects businesses and allows outdoor drinking in the heart of downtown Wixom is officially open.

The Junction, Wixom’s downtown social district, opened for business last week, allowing participating businesses to sell alcohol to-go drinks and enable patrons 21+ to drink an alcoholic beverage on sidewalks and public areas within the social district boundaries.

“It’s a big day, we’re very excited,” Wixom Downtown Development Authority Executive Director Laura Cloutier said last Wednesday, shortly after The Junction officially opened. “It’s been a long process. We’ve been working on getting this to become a reality since June, so about six months. We are very excited; we’ve gotten good feedback and excitement from the community. We feel that it’s going to be very good for the businesses that are participating and to bring new people to our downtown.”

Social districts began popping up throughout the state last summer after Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Public Act 124 into law, allowing local governments to establish social districts in their jurisdictions in an attempt to support bars and restaurants negatively impacted by the pandemic. Today, Michigan has nearly 80 different downtowns with outdoor social districts open, including 11 in Oakland County alone.

As part of The Junction, drinks must be purchased at a participating business that has a social district permit issued through the Michigan Liquor Control Commission, and drinks must be served in a designated social district cup. When ordering an alcoholic beverage to take into The Junction, patrons should specify that you are taking your drink to enjoy in the district…

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