Kenosha County Executive Jim Kreuser announced today an agreement with a local vendor to develop a beer garden at Petrifying Springs Park.
The five-year lease agreement between Kenosha County and Petrifying Springs Biergarten LLC will allow the vendor to construct a German-style beer garden, and sell German-style food, premium beer, wine and non-alcoholic beverages, and provide a variety of activities at and around Shelter #1, located at the southern entrance to Petrifying Springs Park, 5555 Seventh St., Kenosha.
The vendor, Petrifying Springs Biergarten LLC, will devote more than $130,000 in improvements to convert the picnic shelter into a beer garden over the next several months in anticipation to open by Memorial Day weekend. The addition of the beer garden will also lead to creating a revenue source that will go toward park improvements.
“This is an exciting opportunity to bring the old world German biergarten tradition to a Kenosha County park, like those introduced in Milwaukee first in the mid-19th Century and reintroduced in parks in other counties again today,” Kreuser said. “It will provide another reason for Petrifying Springs to be a destination park in the region.”
Petrifying Springs Biergarten LLC is a joint ownership between Mike Grab, owner of Grab’s Burger Bar, 2324 18th St., and Tony DeBartolo, former owner of DeBartolo Deli and Liquor in Kenosha.
Grab and DeBartolo approached county officials in 2016 and proposed a mutually beneficial strategy to bring concessions and activities, as well as additional revenue, to Petrifying Springs.
“My business partner and I recognized the desire of Kenosha residents to have new and exciting things to do here in our own backyard,” Grab said. “We see it as a great opportunity for the community to come together to enjoy nature, make some new friends and relive one of Wisconsin’s historic past times.”
Mirroring successful beer gardens in other communities, the Petrifying Springs Biergarten will offer indoor and outdoor seating, a full menu of food and beverage options and weekly activities, such as kickball leagues, movie nights and live, acoustic music.
“This is another great public-private partnership that will bring additional amenities to the Kenosha County Parks system with little to no cost to the taxpayers,” County Board Supervisor Dennis Elverman, chairman of the Public Works and Facilities Committee, said. “Among the successful partnerships are Pringle Nature Center, Kemper Center, the ballparks at Brighton Dale, the bike trails at Silver Lake Park and disc golf. We are looking forward to this being another successful partnership and a big win for everyone.”
Petrifying Springs Biergarten will be open to the public daily from Memorial Day through about October, from Noon to approximately 9 p.m.