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Strict Dress Code At Bar Raising Eyebrows

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WILKES-BARRE – Many bars and restaurants throughout Northeastern and Central Pennsylvania have dress codes, but the rules posted inside one business in Luzerne County have gotten a lot of unexpected attention.

Ted Priestash said he snapped the picture of the dress code at Whiskey Business on Wood Street over the weekend when he stopped to have wings with friends, and posted it on a Facebook page this week.

"Some people seem to go there and like the place, other people feel that it's racist,” said Priestash.

The lengthy dress code bans baggy pants, camouflage clothes, jerseys, hoodies, lettered clothes and other attire at Whiskey Business.

The dress code also said “no out of state IDs”.

The owner of Whiskey Business told Newswatch 16 off camera that the dress code is not new and that the rules were posted to deter trouble, not to discriminate.

A former employee of Whiskey Business said he and his friends think the dress code is fair.

"I have friends that work at other bars. They have to deal with a lot of nonsense and stuff so, anywhere you go there`s a dress code pretty much,” said Ryan Garvey.

Other people who eat and drink out in Wilkes-Barre said the rules go a bit too far.

"They`re trying to keep the college kids out, they`re trying to keep the riffraff out, I can see that,” said Pamela Glaspie. “But that`s too much, that`s like a grocery list.”

State Police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement officials said authorities do not have jurisdiction over bar owner’s dress codes and that it does not appear that the stiff rules violate any laws.


  • Mary Doeson

    No out-of-state ID’s? So when my relatives come visit me from NY & NJ, we’ll be sure not to spend money at your establishment.

  • Richard Wech

    To call this racist, is in fact, racist. The topic of racism is highly misunderstood these days. A lot of times the people who think they are sticking up for people, are the ones who are being racist. It is racist to read a list of banned attire and associate it with one group of people rather, than everyone.

    • Lori

      I don’t think you know what the definition of “Racism” is. Stop trying to turn this into something its not. Its 2014, not the 1900s. Rasims is few and far in between, despite what idiots like you think. There’s a lot more issues in the world then some lonely bar enforcing a dress code that they have every right to enforce. Don’t like it; Don’t go there. Amazing how simple of a solution it is!

  • JP

    Hey it is his/her bar after all, and should be able to enforce any reasonable dress code that they wish. I doubt I’ll ever go there, but I may need to call first if I do and describe what I am wearing just to make sure they don’t throw me out. : ) There should be some guidelines at some other restaurants to improve the atmosphere.

  • anonymous

    Don’t like it? Don’t support the business by giving your money to another place. Problem solved.

  • c.n g

    if there is a reason for millions of tax payers dollars spent on cameras on every corner in the town. Over a dozen homicides in bars in recent years. Robberies on the news daily.You can’t walk down the street with a cell phone.Or leave anything in your car. That I’m sorry to say is the way things are. dress codes are the norm not the exception.

    • crackers81

      Right. because if you dress “nice”, whatever hyper-subjective thing that happens to mean to whatever local rube thinks he’s in charge of local standards, means there’ll be less crime.

      I seem to remember a group of impeciby dressed gentlemen who more or less set the entire Eastern Seaboard down a path of depraved gun violence, drug use and institutional corruption that one time…who was it…OH RIGHT! The Italian Mafia.

  • jane doe

    dress code has been there for at least 10 yrs. y now is it wrong? some people just have to mind others business. pun intended.

  • Joe Schmoe

    Who would go to a bar in Wilkes-barre? How about no welfare recipients? How about no Sherman hills tenants!?! Haha that’s a good one!!!

  • shagtastique

    I think that any dress code in NEPA is quite ironic in that no one from NEPA has the slightest clue on how to dress in the first place.

    • John Smith

      Shaggy, you’re just upset because you have nothing in your wardrobe that would get you in.

    • crackers81

      Given that this guy ha snot put even the slightest effort in achieving a formal ambiance, it’s pretty clearly a case of bigotry, of one variety or another, that motivates his silly dress code. Whether or not it’s outright racism is another thing and not an accusation I’ll toss around lightly. I think that may be a step too far given the lack of further evidence. Still, a pity our mindsets are still so regressive that we think over sized shorts somehow equates to less desirable clientel. I am reminded of an elder family member of mine who wasn’t allowed in a malt shop in another central PA town, back in the mid 60s, because he had long “hippy hair”. This is laughable at best, perhaps his right, but then not all that is permissible is advisable.

  • chris

    racist against who? the dress code describes “urban” clothes. Are they saying only black people wear that style? seems to me these liberals are the racist ones.

    • crackers81

      Who said anything about liberals? Or conservatives, for that matter? Have you ever looked up the definition of the term “false dichotomy”? Do so; you are profoundly wanting for education.

  • bobc74

    It’s not like there are no other bars in Wilkes-Barre to go to if you don’t like this one’s dress code rules.

  • Anonymous

    Combine the dress code with the music disallowed on the jukebox and you can decide the motives

  • Jason Swoboda

    I have been going here for the past 10 years and have never had a problem with anyone there. It is probably one of the safest places in that area of Wilkes-Barre. It is a great place with cheap drinks and amazing wings. The dress code is perfectly acceptable, and keeps the riff raff out.

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