Club fined for selling to minors at concert

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The Luke Bryan concert at A-State's Convocation Center hit a sour note with the Alcoholic Beverage Control board.

The ABC fined NEA Sports Club of Jonesboro $600 and placed it on 90-days probation for selling alcohol to two minors at the Feb. 18 concert.

Bill Stanley, president of the nonprofit organization, said in a statement to Region 8 News:

"We were notified by the Alcoholic Beverage Control Division that there were two service violations at a recent concert. The violations concerned two alcohol sales to undercover minors. We take this very seriously, are disappointed it occurred, and have reviewed and accepted Sodexo's plans for additional training to help ensure enforcement of ABC regulations. These are the only violations since service to our members began in August 2015, but any incident of service to a minor is unacceptable to us. We will be very diligent in efforts to make sure this doesn't happen again."

NEA Sports Club entered into a 10-year lease agreement with Arkansas State University in 2015 to sell alcoholic beverages at several campus venues, including the Convocation Center and Tomlinson Stadium.

The nonprofit group contracted with Sodexo, A-State's vendor for food and beverage services, to manage all alcohol-related sales on campus.

Jeff Hankins, Vice President for Strategic Communications & Economic Development, said in an email statement that Sodexo would take actions to prevent further violations:

“Sodexo informed us that the Alcoholic Beverage Control Division was reviewing two incidents at the Luke Bryan concert on February 18. We regret the incidents. It was the largest concert held since NEA Sports Club and Sodexo began alcohol service, so third-party contract servers were used by Sodexo. We’ve been assured the workers who are responsible for these violations will not be used again and that Sodexo will retrain its staff and take other preventative measures. We appreciate the prompt attention and responsiveness of Sodexo and NEA Sports Club. We will ask security personnel at all events to have a heightened awareness of the issue to help ensure enforcement of alcohol laws.”

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

Watch Region 8 News On Demand: On your Desktop | On your Mobile device

Region 8 News App - Install or update on your: iPhone | Android