All it takes for some people to see the light is a little time.
At least that would be a kind way to interpret the recent actions of the Rehoboth Board of Adjustment.
First, in April, they denied your application to expand your highly successful brewpub, Dogfish Head Brewings & Eats. It was a decision that shocked, dismayed and agitated many Rehoboth locals and visitors, particularly when it was revealed that during the hearing one board member suggested that, in lieu of not being able to expand in Rehoboth, the brewpub might instead relocate somewhere out of town.
We wondered what it would have been like to have been in the room at that exact moment, as if someone had just tapped a keg full of skunked ungratefulness.
Thankfully, in May, based on new findings—and perhaps their sudden drop in popularity—these same board members granted you a second hearing to be held this month. We hope the tide is turning with their thought processes and that you are able to move forward with your plans for renovations.
But interestingly enough, the situation generated some enthusiastic discussions among our staff, the general theme being: “Wilmington would never treat you that way.”
Let’s be honest: Wilmington simply could not afford to kick out one of its major attractions. Rehoboth can’t either, for that matter—especially a business that continues to draw visitors in the colder months, long after the beaches have cleared.
But back to Wilmington…
In the spirit of our ongoing “Building A Better Wilmington” series and this month’s focus on the Riverfront, the Out & About staff strongly believes our city could find a promising home for another Dogfish Head brewpub. Our civic leaders would welcome you with open arms. Our developers would stand in line to accommodate you. Our residents, many of whom—as you know—drink your beverages with much fervor, would rejoice in your expansion to New Castle County with your second brewpub in Delaware.
And not one of us would ever suggest you pack up and move anywhere else. Ever.
Three brewpubs in the D.C. area certainly did not negatively impact your Rehoboth location. Likewise, we believe there is strong evidence that a Wilmington location would only enhance the overall Dogfish brand in this region.
Moreover, the Wilmington Riverfront is home to a rich rowing tradition, a successful minor league baseball club, a wildlife refuge, a skating rink (in the winter) and now a brand new miniature golf course—all outdoor pursuits that your owner, Sam Calagione, has championed in past speeches.
There is the desire, the demand, and the energy to make this dream a reality. To prove the point, we are posting a petition on our website entitled: “Please Consider Bringing A Dogfish Head Brewpub to Wilmington.”
Let’s see what happens.
Hopefully, the only other thing required is time.