Video: Protest in Albert Lea as local business faces 5-year liquor license revocation

Residents from Albert Lea and beyond gathered Sunday to protest and march against Governor Tim Walz’s executive orders that put restrictions on bars and restaurants amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The crowd chanted “WE THE PEOPLE!” “END THE TYRANNY!” and “USA!” as it marched from Albert Lea City Hall to the Freeborn County Courthouse. Cowbells could be heard ringing between cries of “Reopen Minnesota!”

The Albert Lea Police Department indicated their support of the protest, announcing on social media they respect the rights of people to peaceably assemble.

The protest was led by Albert Lea business owner Lisa Hanson, who has garnered statewide attention after she opened her wine and coffee bistro, the Interchange, on Dec 19 in defiance of the governor’s order.

Hanson’s business has since been notified of the state’s intention to revoke the Interchange’s liquor license for five years.  Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison also filed a lawsuit against the business for operating in violation of the governor’s executive order, which placed a ban on inside dining.  The AG’s office was granted a temporary restraining order against the Interchange on Dec 23.

More about: