St. Francis Brewing Company
raked in nearly $230,000 in gross revenue including $220,000 in beverage sales at the Humboldt Park beer garden in 2015, based on numbers released by Milwaukee County today.
The brewery began operating the beer garden in 2014 during a trial run with the county and entered into an agreement in 2015 to continue selling beer at the Bay View park through 2020.
As part of the county's five-year agreement with St. Francis Brewing Company, 20 percent of its gross revenue at Humboldt Park, or $45,903, was kept by the county. In addition to that money, five percent of St. Francis' total beverage sales, $11,000, was deposited by the brewery in an account for future park improvements. The brewery also reimbursed the county for utilities and made another $15,000 of improvements at the park.
"There’s a lot of value on both sides of the equation," said Nick Dillon, operations manager of St. Francis Brewing Company. "We really feel like we’ve got a great community that’s around us, and as far as value on both sides, we’ve been able to get our name out there and increase our brand by having that beer garden there."
District 14 County Supervisor Jason Haas said this morning the $11,000 will be used for restroom renovations at Humboldt Park.
"Good things come from drinking beer," Haas said. "It’s really brought a good crowd into the park. People recognize that if they have a $5 beer there, 25 cents of that beer stays in the park for park improvements. Good beer, good cause, good times."
Milwaukee County parks has four permanent beer gardens at Humboldt Park, Estabrook Park, Hoyt Park in Wauwatosa, and the South Shore Terrace in Bay View. The county also has two traveling beer gardens operated in partnership with Sprecher brewing Company.
The Humboldt Park beer garden will reopen on May 2, Dillon said.
Dillon said the brewery hopes to double sales in 2016 and is rolling out a few changes at the beer garden this year, including changing its name to "Milwaukee’s Craft Beer Garden" and adding as many as five Wisconsin breweries who are part of the Wisconsin Brewer's Guild on tap.
The county's flagship beer garden at Estabrook Park opens at noon on Saturday, April 23 and the Landing at Hoyt Park opens May 18. The South Shore Terrace beer garden in Bay View will reopen in April, but a specific date has not yet been set according to the county's website