Wednesday, July 4, 2012
Drinking beer while lazily floating down the Guadalupe River on an inner tube is a heat-beating tradition for hundreds of thousands of visitors to New Braunfels each summer.
But turnout is down and businesses say the reason is clear: a voter-approved ban on disposable beer containers in the water that has heightened the tension between tubing companies reliant on tourism dollars and residents weary of badly behaved partygoers who leave behind truckloads of trash.
The so-called can ban doesn't prohibit alcohol -- beer and liquor are still allowed on the river if poured into reusable containers -- but that message hasn't been sticking. Local businesses hope a new city marketing campaign will clarify the ordinance and entice vacationers back.