Hoyt Park beer garden in Wauwatosa off to a good start

Published on: 7/30/2013

The Landing at Hoyt Park has been open for business for a week and a half, hosted a live music event, and done good business in what is not a great-weather summer.

'It's been very good, it's been very well received so far,' said Kit Slawsky, executive director of the Friends of Hoyt Park & Pool.

Attendance 'is weather dependent,' she said, 'although our first Wednesday ... was kind of a rainy day, and we had about 50 — between 50 and 75 people — and when it started raining they picked up their beers and stood under the canopy until it stopped raining and moved back out.'

Slawsky said lighting has been installed since the first days; steins and pint glasses, which weren't available at The Landing's debut, have arrived; and shade sails and umbrellas, which will cover parts of the seating area, may be installed by the weekend.

The shades, made of umbrella fabric, will provide protection from the sun and some cover from rain, she said.

Music and more

A guitar concert last Thursday was well received, Slawsky said, and drew no complaints from neighbors, which had been a concern in city debates about the beer garden.

Parking, another issue, has not been a problem, she said. 'We have found that people are using the parkway as well (as the parking lot), and coming across the footbridge. '

The pool and the beer garden have worked well together, Slawsky has observed. 'When the pool is closed for the day, (patrons) come out and enjoy the beer garden when they're done enjoying the pool,' with kids using the concession that faces the parkway.

Generally dreary weather has affected the pool, though less than might be imagined, Slawsky said.

'The last two summers, as you know, were great weather summers. We had a lot of days over 90 degrees. I think people have realized that this summer's a little different, and when the weather permits, they're over here,' she said.

Kids, especially, aren't fussy.

'It's really warm on the concrete and the water is heated to 81 degrees. The kids don't care.'

The Landing has a capacity of about 280, and its hours are 3 to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.