Mittenfest Promises a Cure for Winter Blues

New this year, this two-day, limited-ticket event will showcase local craft beer, food trucks, and music at Washington Park.

While the pandemic has canceled many scheduled events in the last 11 months, one new event will take place come rain, sleet, or snow. The Mittenfest outdoor festival, which runs February 20–21 in Washington Park, is geared toward supporting downtown and Over-the-Rhine breweries, restaurants, and shops that may have experienced a decrease in traffic since the pandemic started.

Patrons visiting Winter Market, which made the move from Fountain Square to Washington Park this winter to allow for better social distancing.

Photograph courtesy of 3CDC

Emily Stowe, the senior event marketing manager for 3CDC, says the organization previously discussed holding a winter event in the park, but didn’t know if people would be interested. Now, with more “weather-proof” events moving outdoors due to COVID-19 concerns, they decided it would be a good time to test it out.

For $25, festgoers can get three 12-ounce draft beers from beer booths, one Coca-Cola product or water from park concessions and one draft beer at a participating taproom (valid from the time of the event until March 28).

Participating breweries include Rhinegeist Brewery, Fifty West Brewing Co., Taft’s Brewing Co., Christian Moerlein Brewing Co., Platform Beer Co., Samuel Adams Brewery, Rebel Mettle Brewery, and MadTree Brewing.

“We love to show support to local events that showcase the unique character of the city,” says Paul Benner, co-founder of Platform Beer Co. “Mittenfest is a perfect example of this, bringing the surrounding community out for a great event, especially one that focuses on craft beer!”

Patrons enjoying drinks on The Porch presented by PPG Paints this December.

Photograph courtesy of 3CDC

Besides beverages, deejays are on deck to spin while participants imbibe. The lineup includes Fuseamania and TJ Smooth on Saturday and Steve the Greek and SAB on Sunday. The event will also feature some food truck favorites onsite, but Stowe noted that outside food is allowed and encouraged.

“There’s so many businesses one block away on Vine Street; you can pick up your carryout before you come, and you can head to any of those restaurants after your three beers,” she notes. “You can kind of snack a bit at the park and then head somewhere else.”

Those interested in purchasing tickets should act fast—there are only 500 available for each day. To prevent large crowds, the ticket purchaser must select a one-hour time frame to pick up their items. Mittenfest hats are also available for purchase.

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