One of the fun things about doing the MBIP blog is that I get invited places. I always tell people that years ago I was used to showing up at a party and hearing, “Oh no, how did he find out about this?” And now all these years later I actually get invited to parties and functions and it’s pretty thrilling for me! This week I got invited to go to the Civic Center and sample some food and craft beers at a pub there called, Brewhaus Bros. and then check out the winter fun at the PNC Winterfest which is happening right outside of the Civic Center. Of course I accepted the invitation and you’re invited too, so away we go!
And here we are at The Peoria Civic Center. I’ve always loved the mirrored look of the Civic Center that reflects all the buildings around it here in downtown Peoria.
We’ll just go through these doors to...
The reception area where receptionist Vickie greeted us! Vickie’s worked here at the Civic Center for 25 and three quarters years. And she told me to emphasize the three quarters, so here we go: 25 and THREE QUARTERS YEARS! Vickie called two of the people that extended our invitation tonight...
Andrew and Anne! It was great to meet both of them, Andrew’s originally from Detroit and Anne lives in Washington, Illinois and is neighbors with my friends Tim and Colleen Carey. Tim was featured here on MBIP when we toured Butch’s Pizza.
Next we met Edna who’s pointing at one of my favorite things in the Civic Center, The Heinz Condiment Station!
Edna led the way down the hall to...
The Brewhaus Bros. Pub! This place is really cool and I had no idea that there was a pub inside of the Civic Center!
I love the rustic wooden front and feel of this place.
Here’s the crew for the afternoon party at Brewhaus Bros. From left: Judy, Pat, Beau, Edna, Becca the bartender, Andrew and Anne. Everyone here works for the Civic Center except for Pat, who works for Brewers Distributing. Brewers supplies the large variety of craft and domestic beers here at the pub. And speaking of beers...let’s get this party started!
This was such a fun afternoon! The beer selection is fantastic and they even have local brew from Peoria Brewing Company on tap. And there’s a nice selection of food, including one of the best chili dogs I’ve ever had! The chili is spicy, but not too over the top and of course it’s beanless, the way all chili should be! Thanks to everybody for a really fun time, I had a blast! And you should definitely check out the Brewhaus Bros. Pub next time you’re at an event at the Civic Center!
Andrew pointed out that they try to utilize as many local vendors as they can at the Civic Center, I mentioned Peoria Brewing Company before and he told me all the meat here is supplied by Raber Packing Company. Nice!
After the Brewhaus afternoon happy hour, we went outside to check out the PNC Winterfest. There’s an ice skating rink that’s been installed outside of the Civic Center and it’s really been a popular attraction. You can read about it right here and as you can see from these photos, people are really having fun here.
In addition to the skating rink, there’s an ice slide here I had to try!
You climb the stairs and wait at the top for your turn to go down the icy slide. There’s a gentleman there who’ll give you a push when you’re seated at the top and it’s your turn. The last two shots here are action shots I took while sliding down the ice. This was a real rush in more ways than one! It’s worth the price of admission just to have this experience. And you can slide down it unlimited times!
Here’s Kathy who’s manning the Snack Shack which has hot dogs, potato chips, candy, hot chocolate and something I really enjoyed, a drink called a Rum Chata and Cocoa. Basically it’s hot chocolate with rum in it and it was so good! A perfect drink to have while enjoying the Winterfest on a chilly evening.
WWCT is broadcasting from here, but the booth was empty, so I took over the station for a couple of minutes! #ithastobeMBIPandCT!
This is the warming tent that’s located next to the ice skating rink and ice slide.
It’s nice and toasty warm in here and it's a great place to relax and take the chill off. And of course enjoy your Rum Chata and Cocoa drink!
You can watch all the outside action from inside the tent.
Chelsea and Bella were warming up inside and Bella was a little camera shy! Too funny!
Okay, the moment of truth has arrived. I’ve never ice skated in my life and decided to give it a try. You get your skates at this building here. I nervously went out on the ice, clutched the wall for safety and then proceeded to fall right on my ass! After that I decided to get off the ice and go back to the Snack Shack and get another Rum Chata and Cocoa! This was a total blast, if you haven’t gone, you definitely should check it out! And if you’re looking for something different to next week during the Christmas holiday, the PNC Winterfest is open Christmas Eve from noon to five in the afternoon and on Christmas night it’s open from 5pm to 10pm. Thanks to Andrew, Anne, Beau, Edna and everyone at the Peoria Civic Center for a really fun Thursday afternoon and evening!
Andrew and I ended the evening at Kickback on Fulton where I ran into Laura, who I’ve corresponded with on facecrack, but never met in person! It was so cool to finally meet and chat with her and how cute is she in that hat?
And then this happened! I love it when that happens! We’ll see you all tomorrow!
Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner! The Winner of the MBIP Guess The Check contest on facecrack!
And here’s the check total:
And the winner is...