Milwaukee County Traveling Beer Gardens, Whitnall Beer Garden to reopen next week

MILWAUKEE COUNTY, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Milwaukee County’s Whitnall Beer Garden and the Traveling Beer Gardens will return next week, with a few modifications for physical distancing and plenty of outdoor seating.

Whitnall Beer Garden in Greendale will open on Monday June 8 at 4pm, followed by The Traveling Beer Garden at Froemming Park in Franklin on Wednesday June 10 at 5 p.m., and at Doctors Park in Fox Point on Friday June 12 at 5 p.m.

“With so many festivals and events canceled in Milwaukee, the beer gardens will be a welcome taste of summer and a safe way for friends, family and neighbors to come together,” said David Crowley, Milwaukee County Executive. “Money spent at county beer gardens stays in the county too. Food and beverage sales help fund other much needed parks services including wading pools, trails and summer programming in the parks.”

According to a news release, revenue from services including special event permits, food and beverage, golf and rentals fund around 60% of the annual operations costs for Milwaukee County Parks, and with many services impacted by COVID-19, the park system is facing an anticipated $5m budget shortfall. Opening the beer gardens, which generated over $1.5m in revenue in 2019, could help limit any further reductions in services or staff hours.

The beer gardens will look a little different this season, the news release says. Milwaukee County Parks staff have spent several weeks developing plans to keep staff and patrons safe. These changes include the use of single-use plastic cups, rather than beer gardeners using their own pints or stein glasses; tables will be spread further apart and green bricks will show tables that have been sanitized and are ready for use. Masks are encouraged when patrons are not eating or drinking. This season there will be no live music or keg tappings either.

At Whitnall Beer Garden two additional beer trailers have been added to help reduce lines for beverages. A total of 24 beers will be available, many from local breweries including MKE Brewing Company, Explorium, Eagle Park Brewing, GoodCity Brewing, MillerCoors and Sprecher Brewing Company.

Whitnall Beer Garden in Greendale, will open on Monday June 8, from 4-10 p.m. on weekdays and 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. on weekends. Last call at 9 p.m.

The two Traveling Beer Gardens, operated by Milwaukee County Park in partnership with Sprecher Brewery, will begin next week with the Pass Me a Pint Tour opening on Wednesday June 10 at Froemming Park in Franklin and the Roll Out the Barrel Tour opening on Friday June 12 at Doctors Park in Fox Point. The Traveling Beer Gardens will open from 5-10pm on weekdays and 11am-10pm on weekends. Last call at 9pm.

“Sprecher is once again excited to be part of the Traveling Beer Gardens with the Milwaukee County Parks.” Said Jim Kanter, Chief Commercial Officer Sprecher Brewing Company. “ It is a great, longstanding tradition in the Milwaukee area which brings people together in our great parks system during the summer. We look forward to people getting out and enjoying the delayed start to the summer season in Milwaukee."

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