With Philly Entering Yellow Phase, Parks on Tap Returns with Social Distancing
Grab a beer—and your mask—because this kid-friendly outdoor beer garden Parks on Tap is making it happen.
UPDATE: On July 9, Parks on Tap will open at a second location for the rest of the season: Fairmount Water Works. The rules are the same as we’ve detailed below for Fairmount Horticultural Center, and the views are just as beautiful–this time, you can sit on the banks of the Schuylkill behind the Art Museum!
We had given up on summertime beer gardens with the coronavirus crisis, and were taking solace in the many adult-beverage-to-go options popping up around town. But with Philly entering the Yellow phase, including outdoor dining starting June 12, we have some great news for anyone craving some sunshine and sips. Parks on Tap — the brilliant creation of Philadelphia Parks and Recreation, the Fairmount Park Conservancy, and FCM Hospitality —is returning with its kid-friendly beer garden starting this Friday, June 12 at 4 pm.
Avram Hornik, owner of FCM Hospitality, has three kids of his own and created Parks on Tap five years ago, partly with the goal of creating places where families can gather. Since then, it has become a sensation, touring parks around the city with local beer, food, and fun for all ages. The “beer garden that gives back,” a portion of all Parks on Tap proceeds every year are donated to help restore and maintain Philly’s parks. Due to the global pandemic, the outdoor beer garden will pop-up for the entire summer at the surprise location of Fairmount Horticulture Center Arboretum, with potentially other fixed locations to be announced later in the summer.
In addition to the decision to operate at a stationary location this year, Parks on Tap is implementing changes to make it safer for everyone who chooses to go out. Staff and guests in the beer garden area must always wear a mask, except when seated. Social distancing markers will be measured out and posted throughout the garden (both in line and seating areas) and its outside fencing area as reminders for guests. All seating is first-come, first-served. If the beer garden is at capacity during the time guests come to visit, a waitlist will be established and guests will be encouraged to explore the park until they receive a text message that it’s their turn.
Sanitizing spray and/or wipes will be accessible to guests, so they are able to wipe down chairs and tables—and additional cleaning standards will be implemented prior to opening, after closing and throughout the day by staff. Guests’ free seasonal membership also allows for contact tracing if a local outbreak occurs. Staff will also be subject to temperature checks prior to the start of all shifts to assure they are safely able to work.
As always, the menu is full of delicious local food and drinks. Sandwiches incorporating Lost Bread Co. products (also found at Craft Hall) include pulled pork, cheesesteaks, hoagies, and more. Kids’ favorites like hotdogs, cookies, and soft pretzels are also available. The drink menu features local breweries like Mainstay, Sly Fox, and Evil Genius. One notable draft, originally created for Parks on Tap, is Mainstay Independent Brewing Company’s Love Your Park Pale Ale. Wine and cocktails, as well as non-alcoholic beverages, are also on the menu.
Parks on Tap begins June 12 at Fairmount Horticulture Center, located at 100 N. Horticultural Drive in Philadelphia’s Fairmount Park. Seasonal hours for Parks on Tap will be Monday to Friday, from 4 pm to 10 pm, and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 10 pm. Please note that hours and days of operation may change due to weather and special events. Follow Parks on Tap on Facebook and Instagram for updates and changes.
Photographs by Albert Yee.