The Anti-Bars: Token Clubs

People in recovery often face a social dilemma: where to hang out when bars and clubs must remain off-limits. For many, so-called Token Clubs provide an answer — and a safe haven — the Louisiville Courier-Journal reported July 12.

Lousiville, Ky.’s West End Token Club, for example, serves coffee and soda instead of alcohol, and patrons meet for sober dates, not pickups. The former bar, open daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and featuring a big-screen TV and space for 12-step meetings, is owned by recovering alcoholics and addicts.

“We can’t go around old people and places,” said co-owner Charles McGinnis. “So that’s the purpose of this place: to keep us — to keep me — from straying.”

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