Cold brews and chilly winds add up to a big success in Kennett Square
By J. Chambless
Oxford breweries Bog Turtle and Hollow Earth were side by side.
The 2019 Kennett Winterfest proved once again that nothing draws a crowd like beer. The more beer, the better.
On the afternoon of Feb. 23, the southern end of Broad Street in Kennett Square was a magnet for thousands of patrons, who came to sample the distinctive brews of 67 brewers and distillers from this region and surrounding states. Set up in two long tents, the brewers handed out small samples of their wares while heaters provided some warmth against the icy winds that occasionally whipped through the crowd. No one seemed to mind, and everyone came dressed for the temperatures, which weren’t too bad compared to past years, when gripping a tiny mug was hard to do with frostbitten fingers. There were several notable outfits in the crowd, including three striped onesies that were easy to pick out.
With the band AfroBear providing an upbeat soundtrack, patrons lined up to sample their favorites, discover breweries from far away, and munch on pretzels that were helpfully put on strings so they could be worn as necklaces, freeing up both hands for drinking.
Food trucks provided meals and snacks throughout the day from Abuelita’s Empanadas, Dia Dolce Cupcakes, George and Sons Seafood, Ka-Chi Korean With a Twist, Natalie’s Fine Foods and Southbound BBQ. There were vendor tables to promote the upcoming Kennett Run, sell commemorative Winterfest gear, and dispense fiery samples from Frankly-Deep Hot Sauce.
While patrons got to sample some very limited-production beers, and the breweries scored points and future customers, Historic Kennett Square was the big winner, raising thousands of dollars that will be put back into programs to benefit residents and draw more visitors to Kennett.
In terms of a win-win situation, it was hard to beat.