Elmhurst Craft Beer Fest exceeds expectations
Graydon Megan, Pioneer Press
The second annual Elmhurst Craft Beer Fest exceeded expectations, both for its organizers and for visitors sampling beers and other offerings from 30 craft beverage producers, each of whom brought two or three of the products for tasting.
“It’s going fabulously,” Cathy Jordan of the Elmhurst Heritage Foundation said midway through the event Saturday afternoon.
The event, sponsored by Jordan’s organization and the Rotary Club of Elmhurst and held on the grounds of the Elmhurst History Museum, offered more than 60 beers, ales and ciders to a crowd of visitors.
“Last year we had one tent,” Jordan said, “and this year we have three — all full.”
Jordan said Monday the final attendance number was between 550 and 600.
Jordan was especially happy that this year’s event drew not only Elmhurst residents, but visitors from the surrounding area, noting that the first 200 people were given $5 certificates good at any eatery in town.
“It’s a great way to bring people into Elmhurst,” agreed Mayor Steve Morley, beer sample in hand.
Elmhurst resident and first time visitor Kristi Phipps called the event fantastic and said she was excited about all the new breweries and restaurants represented.
Those places include the Red Arrow Tap Room, set to open on 1st Street in early November, offering a range of craft beers and wine in a unique self-serve format.
Also on hand were representatives from what will soon be Elmhurst’s first in-town brewery. Pete Dolan, co-owner of Elmhurst Brewing Company, said his company had just closed on a space at 171 N. Addison Ave. and hope to open their brewery and pub in March of next year.
Bonnie and Greg Jordan of Elmhurst were enjoying not just the beer, but the whole experience of Saturday’s event. Both said they liked the community nature of the fest and its manageable size. Bonnie Jordan said they recently attended an event in Lisle that she called, “too large — overwhelming.”
“We’re hoping that people will want to do it again next year,” Jordan said.
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