Opinion: It’s Time We Stopped Complaining About Kids At Breweries

Opinion piece written by Chadd Balbi, co-owner of Breweries In PA

It’s time we stopped complaining about kids at breweries.

Why? Because they aren’t going anywhere. The days of breweries being dim-lit, small hole-in-the-walls offering only five drink choices are gone. Breweries are now much more inclusive establishments inviting families in, and won’t be banning them anytime soon.

As long as kids can behave, sit with their parents, and keep themselves busy, there should be no issue. Many breweries offer games for kids to play or even allow parents to bring their own games, video games, or books for their kids to enjoy. Breweries also offer kid-friendly options on their menus, with non-alcoholic drinks and food for kids.

If you are reading this, thinking we are advocating for all breweries to be kid-friendly, you are missing the point entirely. Pennsylvania is a large state, there are plenty of options for those who wish to avoid seeing children at the bar. Our point here is that breweries are evolving and many are offering a dining experience for the entire family, not just those who want to see craft beer be for a select few.

At the same time we aren’t suggesting kids should have a free run of the space. We understand there can be issues, such as parents who do not watch their kids.

If you aren’t going to pay attention to your children and instead let them run around the brewery, let them throw things (chairs, rocks in beer gardens, etc), or let them scream and disrupt other customers, then you probably shouldn’t bring your kids to a brewery. This is the same as if there were a drunk customer or a dog who didn’t get along with others in public locations. People need to use common sense.

Children are not the issue, it’s the parents who need to watch them, and therefore create the atmosphere into what it is.

Understand that many breweries are becoming much more inclusive environments; inviting well-behaved kids through their doors. But not to fear. If you are looking for those locations who would prefer you to leave your kids at home, you can find them. They’re just not that common in today’s modern era.

What are your thoughts on kids at breweries? What have you experienced?

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