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Posted on Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 5:58 a.m.

Glacier Hills Senior Living Community to get liquor license thanks to change in law

By Lizzy Alfs

Ann Arbor City Council recently approved a request from the Glacier Hills Senior Living Community for a continuing care retirement center liquor license.

It will now go to the Michigan Liquor Control Commission for final issuance.

The Glacier Hills compound, situated on 34 acres off Earhart Road in Ann Arbor, is a continuing care senior living community that offers a range of living environments, including short and long-term.

glacier hills 1.jpg

The Ann Arbor City Council recently approved a liquor license request for the Glacier Hills Senior Living Community, located off Earhart Road in Ann Arbor.

Melanie Maxwell |

Until recently, most senior residential communities in the state of Michigan were not able to qualify for a liquor license because they are usually privately owned and don’t meet the guidelines for an on-premise Class C liquor license.

But a change in legislation now allows up to 20 Michigan retirement facilities to obtain a license with approval from the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.

Ray Rabidoux, president and CEO of Glacier Hills, said those licenses are being issued on a first-come, first-serve basis.

“In order to be eligible, you have to be a continuing care retirement community in the state of Michigan. There are about 26 in the state that meet that definition,” Rabidoux explained.

“There are a number of other communities that have also applied for the licenses,” he continued.

Rabidoux said he is expecting the license to be issued sometime in December, and then it will be a month or two before Glacier Hills will make alcohol available to its residents.

He said the option for alcoholic beverages will be mostly targeted towards residents in the independent living areas of the compound.

“The residents certainly in their own apartments can have anything they want,” he said. “This is primarily for dining rooms and other areas where there may be functions where the residents would like to purchase an alcoholic beverage.”

Glacier Hills staff will be trained to make sure people aren’t over-served and that they are in the appropriate condition to be given alcohol.

“It’s the same kind of training that wait staff anywhere that serves alcohol would have to have,” he said.

Rabidoux said the decision to serve alcohol at Glacier Hills is important because the residents should have the option.

“For many of them, it’s more difficult to get out and go to a restaurant or a bar or something if they’d like an alcoholic beverage,” he said. “Now, they can have the convenience and enjoyment of being able to do that at Glacier Hills as part of their facility.”

Lizzy Alfs is a business reporter for Reach her at 734-623-2584 or email her at Follow her on Twitter at



Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 11:31 p.m.

This is good news. Now when I visit my parents-in-law there for dinner, it'll be a little less dull.


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 9:51 p.m.

Check their ID!


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 9:30 p.m.

Darn, I'm living in the wrong place!!


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 9:06 p.m.

great news


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 8:46 p.m.

Now the aids are really going to have a hard time getting grandma up for breakfast.


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 6:23 p.m.

Will they still be "carded" the way i am at Hillers every time i buy a bottle of dinner wine?? ( i'm 68...but admittedly don't look a day over 62!)


Wed, Dec 7, 2011 : 3:15 p.m.

Here is the sad part. I was carded until I was 35. Then at 36? They told me I look "old" enough not to be carded. I was livid.


Wed, Dec 7, 2011 : 11:46 a.m.

I no longer buy alcoholic beverages anywhere (like the store you mentioned) where they feel the need to card everyone, including those who look 50. Fortunately, I think Glacier Hills has enough intelligence not to behave that way.

Urban Sombrero

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 8:01 p.m.

My grey hair belies my age, but I'd rather they ignore that and pretend that they have to card me, regardless... Yes, I'm in denial. So what?!?!!!!

Urban Sombrero

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 7:59 p.m.

I'm not quite 40 (though, if you were to ask me, I'd play coy and say I'm only 26) but...honestly, I consider it a compliment when I'm carded. It makes my day!


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 5:36 p.m.

I went to the bar and a retirement home broke out

Urban Sombrero

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 6:07 p.m.

Hahaha! Awesome.

Urban Sombrero

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:57 p.m.

I think this is a great idea. Let the elderly overpay for booze like the rest of us.

Urban Sombrero

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:58 p.m.

And, no need for a designated driver! A bar right where you live. Where do I sign up?

Bertha Venation

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:44 p.m.

Hot Diggity!! Now I don't have to sneak out to Necto! :)

Bertha Venation

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 4:15 p.m.

HA. Thanks, U/S! You have good comments too!

Urban Sombrero

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 4:11 p.m.

**snort** You made me giggle. :)

Bertha Venation

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 4:05 p.m.

AND no more DUIs on the Hoveround! :)

Billy Bob Schwartz

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:44 p.m.

They need to be sure to bring a designated walker! lol (Hey, I'm an old coot. I get to say these things.)


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:42 p.m.

What next, Medical Marajuana ???

dading dont delete me bro

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:37 p.m.

guess they didn't learn how to sneak it before they turned 21?

Turd Ferguson

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:43 p.m.

21 was a long time ago for some of them... ;-)

Ron Granger

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:22 p.m.

Does this mean that residents will no longer be able to consume their own beverages in common areas? So now, instead of bringing a beer or cocktail to bingo, they must buy one?

Brian Kuehn

Wed, Dec 7, 2011 : 12:14 a.m.

Correct. Once an establishment has a license, no one is legally allowed to b.y.o.b. Inside a private residence would remain okay but no consumption is allowed unless served by the licensee. It makes some sense since the licensee may be held responsible for damages arising out of over-serving. If people could bring their own beverages it would be more difficult to determine responsibility.


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:19 p.m.

Good for the city council. Its funny, all the talk now is of making government smaller but still we have things like the liquor control commission. They enforce all the old time blue laws that no one in the state cares about. I should be able to have a beer in any restaurant in this town, but no, only the blessed with large pockets and plain white envelopes full of cash get the nod.


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 3:14 p.m.

This should make Bingo time a little more exciting =-}'

Billy Bob Schwartz

Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 9:37 p.m.

jns... MUST you bring politics into this? LOL


Tue, Dec 6, 2011 : 4:06 p.m.

I totally agree. Tea totaling anyone?