Summertime in the City of Brotherly Love is back in full swing, and although things in 2020 do look a bit different than they have in the past, there are a few favorites opening back up just in time to enjoy the sunshine season.
A few weeks ago, the popular roving beer garden from FCM Hospitality that operates for the benefit of Philly parks, Parks on Tap, opened its first location of the summer at the Fairmount Horticulture Center Arboretum. Already, plenty of Philadelphians have indulged in everything they know and love about the seasonal staple including fresh food, beers on tap, wine and non-alcoholic beverages all in an outdoor setting that helps set the scene. But now, there’s another reason to celebrate—Parks on Tap also added a second location last weekend with more food, fun and of course, social distancing.
According to the release, Parks on Tap is expanding on their first season as a stationary beer garden with the launch of a new location outside the famous Fairmount Water Works at 640 Waterworks Drive. Parks on Tap will join and work with the existing business community outside Water Works, including Cosmic Cafe, a farm-to-table organic cafe option for guests, and Wheel Fun Rentals, which offers family-friendly 4-wheel multi-passenger surrey rides for sight-seeing along Boathouse Row. Wheel Fun is offering free rentals to medical first responders (hospital and urgent care workers, EMTS, paramedics and firefighters) as well, and organizing partners encourage everyone to support these partners while they also explore new park spaces during their day with Parks on Tap.
“Parks on Tap has proven to be a hit with local residents looking to get outside and enjoy our parks but keep their social distance and practice safety first,” said FCM Hospitality Owner Avram Hornik in a statement. “During the global pandemic, outdoor socially distanced options like Parks on Tap are more important than ever as city residents look to spend summer in the city, while they find new and different ways to enjoy stay-cation options.”
Philadelphians will get to admire the scenes and sights along the Schuylkill River while enjoying this outdoor beer garden. The venue will be roped off, providing its own power, bathrooms, food and drink trucks, seating, shade and lights. That all means that Parks on Tap will certainly be able to continue its mission fully providing money to be raised to make a direct impact on park improvements and future programming.
The food and drink menu will offer visitors a ton of delicious choices, most of which are locally sourced items. Philadelphians can enjoy a variety of snacks including soft pretzels (with mustard and/or pimento cheese), deviled eggs, white bean hummus, sour cream and onion dip and more along with an assortment of sandwiches. Sandwich choices range from a pulled pork option, to a brisket cheesesteak, to a jerk chicken salad pick and a few more mouth-watering choices in between. Philadelphians can also purchase an array of sides to complement their meal—think cornbread with BBQ butter, seasonal fruit salad, coleslaw and more.
Drink-wise however is really where the variety kicks in for this outdoor oasis. Parks on Tap will be serving up an abundance of drafts including the Mainstay Independent Poplar Pils, 2SP ‘Up & Out’ IPA, Sly Fox ‘SRT’ Pale Ale, Dogfish Head Seasonal, Evil Genius #adulting Guava IPA and more with prices ranging from $5 to $7. The beer garden will also be serving up can options including Golden Road Melon Cart, 21st Amendment El Sully, Flying Dog Numero Uno Cerveza, Sixpoint Crisp and more with prices ranging from $5 to $6. On the non-alcoholic side, guests can sip on cucumber-mint water, water, lemonade and iced tea as well.
Seating-wise, Parks on Tap will not be taking reservations. If you arrive and the venue is filled, you and your party will be entered onto a waiting list and texted when your table is available. Masks must be worn, and Parks on Tap will be extensively following state regulations to safely operate and will be adjusting (if necessary) to the city guidelines once they are released. Philadelphians and their furry friends are also welcome, the seasonal pop-up is dog-friendly as well.
Social distancing markers will be measured out and posted throughout the garden and its outside fencing area as reminders for guests. Daily entry sign-in also allows for contact tracing if a local outbreak occurs and sanitizing spray and/or wipes will also be accessible to guests, so they are able to wipe down chairs and tables. Staff and guests in the beer garden area must always wear a mask, except when seated. Staff will be subject to temperature checks prior to the start of all shifts to assure they are safely able to work. Additional cleaning standards will be implemented prior to opening, after closing and throughout the day by staff.
Parks on Tap’s second location is 21+ but children and families are welcome as long as they are accompanied by a parent or legal guardian who has ID. Parks on Tap at Fairmount Park’s Water Works will be Monday to Friday from 4 to 10 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 10 p.m. Visit @parksontap on Instagram and Facebook for regular updates.