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Pickle’s Leads Way In Providing Safe Environment For Patrons With Code-Named Shot System

Sometimes, a night out with friends can’t just be a night out with friends. Someone might approach you, and while they might seem nice at first, they could potentially get a bit too touchy and not let you alone, leaving you uncomfortable and unsure what to do.

Should you leave the bar? Will a bouncer help if you seek them out? What do you do?

Although situations like this are unfortunately all-too-familiar, Bill Pickle’s Tap Room is making that decision-making a little bit easier for its female patrons. Last spring, the bar introduced a system which it communicates through posted signage in the women’s bathroom. Any woman, no matter the reason, can go to the bar, ask for a specific code-named shot, and receive assistance.

Depending on the severity of the situation, patrons have one of two options. They can either order a single shot if they’re looking for someone to run interference in an uncomfortable situation, or they can order a double if they need true physical assistance or the police notified. The idea for the program came by the bar somewhat by accident.

“We had a student last year who was working on a project and wanted to bring awareness and find a safe and secure way to help females who were feeling uncomfortable for whatever reason,” general manager Michael Olmstead said.

Thankfully, Olmstead said, the program hasn’t needed to be used too much, but he’s glad to have such a program in place. For him, making everyone in the bar comfortable is priceless. Plus, it’s gotten a lot of appreciative feedback from Pickle’s customers.

“We’re a small place and intimate at the same time, so we can stand anywhere and kind of see what’s going on,” he said. “We interact a lot with our guests too, just to make sure everyone feels safe.”

Currently, there’s no program in place for male patrons, but Olmstead is certainly not opposed to the idea.

“Everyone needs to feel safe and secure,” he said. “I know a lot of times on the female side of things, they don’t always want to bring it up, or it’s harder to bring it up, so that was an easy way to translate without having to actually say anything.”

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About the Author

Emma Dieter

Emma is a senior from the ever-popular "right-outside" Philly area studying labor employment relations and PR. She's also the Student Life editor for Onward State. She has been a Penn Stater from cradle and will continue to bleed blue and white, 'til grave. She loves trashy romance novels, watching Netflix, and crying over cute videos of dogs. If you ever want to talk more with her about how great she is, or simply have other inquiries, feel free to email her at [email protected]


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