The Henrietta Quick Stop is the first store in town to stock its coolers after residents voted overwhelmingly in favor of a proposition to legalize the sale of alcohol inside the city limits.
A small crowd gathered outside the convenience store, located at 1003 E. Omega St., as employees of a Wichita Falls beer distributor stocked the shelves Friday evening.
The Texas Alcoholic Beverages Commission approved the store’s permit to sell beer and wine for off-premises at 4:30 p.m. Friday, said Virginia Rogers, manager of the Quick Stop. The first beer truck arrived at 5 p.m.
The Quick Stop was the first store in town to submit an application after the Nov. 6 local option election.
“We had it ready to go as soon as they had the vote,” said Rogers.
In what was Henrietta’s largest-ever turnout for a city election if any kind, 971 ballots were cast, with 760 in favor of the proposition.
In June, Justin O’Malley, owner of O’Malley Arms in Henrietta, started a petition to put the proposition on the ballot, collecting 386 signatures — 44 percent of the registered voters in Henrietta. Only 35 percent was required to get the resolution on the ballot.
O’Malley believes legalizing the sale of alcohol will benefit Henrietta economically.
It didn’t take long for word to get out. Within the first hour of sales, and with the distributor still stocking the coolers, 10-15 beer purchases were made.
O’Malley made the first purchase of beer, a six-pack of Miller Light.
“We’re pretty excited to be the first one,” said Rogers.
The store will offer wine at a later date.