River Road residents call for ‘no parking’ signs ahead of bar opening

Jun 22, 2021

MARION -- Residents of River Road continued to advocate for “no parking” signs on their street at a June 22 Select Board meeting, as they prepare for the opening of Stone Rooster.

The bar, formerly Gilda’s Stone Rooster, was under the operation of longtime owner Gilda Downey until it was bought by restaurateurs John Mello and Joe Sauro this year.

River Road residents, who have experienced the parking problems caused by Downey’s regular jazz concerts, worry that those issues will be exacerbated under new ownership.

“We always were great fans of Gilda,” resident and Planning Board member Chris Collings said. But, he added, “we know because we’re old sack, how quickly parking gets restricted on our street.”

The Select Board is awaiting a parking plan from the new owners, and will not approve an occupancy permit until one is obtained.

“They do have to show a parking plan,” Select Board member John Waterman said.

Residents of River Road advocated for a “no parking” zone of a few hundred yards, but the Select Board and Town Administrator Jay McGrail brought up some issues that could result from that plan.

The Select Board worried that events like graduation parties would lead to River Road residents’ guests receiving tickets for parking on the street.

Resident Kathryn Collings suggested that residents of the road receive parking passes for a small number of guests, but the board and residents did not reach a solution before the end of the discussion.