This past Sunday, Sept. 18, West Chester held their 41st annual Chester County Restaurant Festival. For this event, the entire town was blocked off from traffic so that locals could transform the town into a street festival for all to enjoy. Being one of the biggest events that this town holds, the Restaurant Festival had over 40 food vendors and restaurants, over 60 local artisans and crafters, musicians and artists, plus plenty more set up shop all day to serve the town of West Chester.
The streets were packed, the sun was shining and people were out. It was a perfect Sunday for the event, and the town utilized this by having the event run along the etirety of Gay Street and along Darling Street and onto Church Street. With COVID-19 putting a damper on the past two years, this weekend’s Restaurant Festival was a great way for people to get out of the house safely and finally attend a big event.
Rosie Defeo, a junior at West Chester University, went to the festival for the first time this year:
“I absolutely loved it. There was so much to do even without all of the food — there were puppies from the SPCA, jewelry and even cute face paint. This was the busiest I’ve seen West Chester; we couldn’t even walk down the street because it was so packed. I went into college during COVID and going to the Restaurant Fair was one of the first times life felt . . . normal. One of the biggest appeals of going to West Chester is the town, so when they do events like this, it not only brings the community together but students as well.”
Not only is the festival a great way to bring the community together, but it also is a great opportunity for businesses to get their name out there. Many different restaurants and businesses that were able to attract more customers for themselves and gain a clientele. It was fun to walk around, try different places and get to meet the people who help run the great town of West Chester.
Some people who have lived in this town forever stated how they have been coming to the festival for years: “We absolutely love it. This is one of the events this town holds that pretty much everyone looks forward to every year. It’s nice to see these streets so full and lively again; it reminds me of how lovely this town is. I even have friends that have moved away that come back for today. Good food, good company and, of course, drinks. What more could you want? ”
The restaurant festival was a huge success this year, with the help of West Chester Parks and Recreation and many other organizations, this festival was once again a huge success. The town cannot wait for next year for the festival to resurface for its 42nd year, bringing more food and festivities for everyone to enjoy.
Lauren Beachy is a third-year Media and Culture major with a minor in Communication Studies. LB946715@wcupa.edu