Anchorage; February 21, 2024: Yesterday, Zip Kombucha and several other Alaska breweries and wineries filed a lawsuit challenging entertainment restrictions in the state’s alcohol code. These laws apply unequally, hampering some businesses in favor of others. 

Jessie Janes, owner of Zip Kombucha, would like to offer his community live entertainment and events such as musical acts, dance lessons, open mics, and painting nights, without needing government permission. Alaska allows bars to host these activities but forbids them at breweries and wineries. 

 “Alaska kneecaps breweries and wineries to protect bars and restaurants from competition,” said Donna Matias, an attorney at Pacific Legal Foundation. “Live entertainment, such as music, is protected as free speech under the U.S. and Alaska Constitutions. The government can neither block protected expression nor subject it to unconstitutional permitting requirements.”  

These restrictions do not bear any relationship to protecting the public from harm. Jesse and his fellow Alaskan entrepreneurs, represented free-of-charge by Pacific Legal Foundation, have fought back in court to vindicate their rights. 

The case is Zip Kombucha, et al. v. Joan Wilson, et al. filed in the Superior Court of Alaska, Third Judicial District at Anchorage.

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Pacific Legal Foundation is a national nonprofit law firm that defends Americans threatened by government overreach and abuse. Since our founding in 1973, we challenge the government when it violates individual liberty and constitutional rights. With active cases in 34 states plus Washington, D.C., PLF represents clients in state and federal courts, with 17 wins of 19 cases litigated at the U.S. Supreme Court.

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