BUCKS COUNTY, PA (January 9, 2018) – Bucks County, Pennsylvania, the bucolic backyard of Philadelphia, is gearing up for an exciting new year. From monumental anniversaries to historic developments, a visit to Bucks County is a must in 2018! To help you plan your trip, we’ve rounded up a few of the most notable happenings.
THINGS TO DO
- Parx Casino’s Xcite Center entertainment venue opens with its first show on January 13 (Chicago). Other acts to expect are Rascal Flatts, Reba McEntire, Eddie Money, comedians Wayne Brady, Dane Cook, Gabriel Iglesias, and more. The $50 million expansion adds 45,000 square feet to the Bensalem property and includes two restaurants, Oliveto and The Liberty Bell Gastropub.
- Sesame Place opens their newest rollercoaster, Oscar’s Wacky Taxi, in spring. Guests can expect a wooden-steel hybrid coaster themed after Oscar the Grouch for the little thrill-seekers.
- The Thompson-Neely Mill reopens in Washington Crossing Historic Park in late spring. Originally built in 1875, the structure closed in the 1980’s and began renovations in 2016. It will run as a period-accurate mill that turns wheat into flour, just as it did more than a century ago!
- The James A. Michener Art Museum in Doylestown kicks off the year with the Magical & Real: Henriette Wyeth and Peter Hurd, A Retrospective exhibition. It will run from January 21 – May 6.
PLACES TO STAY
- The Playhouse Inn opens with 12 rooms and a farm-to-table restaurant run by Philadelphia-based Chef Jose Garces, of Iron Chef fame, in New Hope adjacent to the Bucks County Playhouse this summer.
- The Logan Inn begins its expansion project in 2018. This historic bed and breakfast, dating back to 1727, will add a year-round outdoor seating area, 22 new guest rooms, and a banquet space for up to 100 people.
- A new Hilton hotel, Home2 Suites, is under construction next to the Holiday Inn Express in Warminster. The property holds 107 rooms and is scheduled to open in Fall 2018.
BOOMING EPICURIAN SCENE
- Celebrity chef Jose Garces of Iron Chef fame will run the 7,000-square-foot restaurant and event space inside the new Playhouse Inn opening this summer.
- Parx Casino’s expansion will also include the January opening of two new restaurants: Lombardi’s, an iconic Manhattan-based Italian eatery, and The Liberty Bell Gastropub, an elaborate American sports bar and restaurant.
- Ice creamery Owowcow begins construction on their new Chalfont store. Located in an old fire department building on Main Street, the storefront will open by spring 2019.
- New restaurant and pint house The Ram will open in Perkasie this summer next to Borough Hall. It will also include a rooftop lounge.
- Odd Logic Brewing Co. is expected to open in February 2018 on the Delaware River waterfront in Bristol Borough. The much-awaited opening of the town’s first microbrewery will feature brews such as an IPA named “Invisible Friends” and a stout coined “Right in the Feels.”
- Plans have been unveiled to convert the Pond Street garage in Bristol Borough into a gourmet burger joint in 2018. Friends Joe Weston Jr. and Kevin Brannigan are spearheading the opening of the “burger garage,” a modern and contemporary venue that will serve organically grown, custom, ground burgers.
- Warwick Farm Brewing in Rushland plans to open in 2018. The family-owned brewery is also on a farm.
- Two new shops are coming to Bristol Borough in early 2018 - Chuck’s BBQ and Angelina’s Bake Shop. The momentum from Bristol Borough’s Small Business Revolution win continues to give Bucks County a boost.
- DeLorenzo’s Tomato Pies, N.J. based Italian pizzeria and restaurant founded in the 1930’s will open their second Bucks County restaurant in spring 2018. The popular pizza parlor will be located at 1707 Langhorne Yardley Road in Yardley, PA.
- Quakertown Alive! is planning on redeveloping two properties in Quakertown in 2018. The former SEPTA freight station on Front Street is proposed to transform into a restaurant and bar, and the former trolley barn across the train tracks plans to be a farmers market.
MORE REASONS TO VISIT
- Peddler’s Village adds a brand-new event to their line-up. The “Summer Food & Music Festival” will be held June 23-24 to kick-off the summer season with a weekend of food, music, boutique shopping and Village family fun.
- Washington Crossing Historic Park’s 2018 Independence Day Celebration will expand to three days and feature a classic car show, community picnic, music, fireworks, outdoor recreational activities, military encampment, tours of historic buildings, living historians and the annual reading of the Declaration of Independence.
- Fonthill Castle has partnered with the Doylestown Escape Room to host the ‘Fonthill Castle Escape Room.’ On January 26 and 27 only, groups up to 10 can book the little-known room at the top of the castle’s tower for a mysterious evening where they must solve clues to escape before time runs out. Reservations are required, and the room is not recommended for children under 12.
- Sand Castle Winery will host their first Murder Mystery Dinner Theater on January 27. Scheduled to be completed in April, the upper Bucks County winery is also undergoing renovations involving new décor for the second-floor tasting room and a brand new outdoor tent for events.
TOURISM OFFICE INITIATIVES
- Launching the first issue this past Fall, VBC will publish a second Spring/Summer issue of the bi-annual Well Seasoned, Bucks County’s premiere food and beverage magazine.
- Save-the-date for the Bucks County Wedding Show on Sunday, March 11! Venues and vendors, prizes, entertainment and more will be on display for blushing brides and grooms at this unique large-scale event taking place between 12-4pm at Delaware Valley University’s Moumgis Auditorium.
- VBC will kick-off the county’s first ever restaurant week! Enjoy prix fixe menus at the best dining establishments north of Philly during ‘Bucks County Restaurant Week’ April 29 – May 5, 2018.
- The town of Doylestown marks its bicentennial anniversary in 2018! The township’s bicentennial committee has several events planned, including a gala on January 6, a birthday event for Oscar Hammerstein II in July at Highland Farm, a competition to design a new township flag, and a time capsule to be sealed under the grounds of the new municipal complex.
- New Hope Celebrates, Bucks County’s leading LGBT organization, marks its 15th annual Pride Fest. Celebrate “The United Colors of Love,” May 18-20 with a parade and fair in New Hope and Lambertville.
- The Annual Bristol Borough Antique Auto Show is celebrating their 40th anniversary. Spaced along five blocks along the Delaware River, this year’s laudable event will take place on Sunday, May 6.
- The James A. Michener Art Museum, housed in a stunningly transformed former prison in Doylestown, will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2018 with notable exhibitions, including a spotlight on its extensive permanent collection, and programs such as Jazz Nights, lectures, gallery talks, concerts, films, a Broadway Cabaret series, art classes, and more. A special exhibit called ‘In the Museum We Trust: 30 Years of Art at the Michener’ will be on display from September 15, 2018 – January 6, 2019.
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About Visit Bucks County
Visit Bucks County (VBC) is the official tourism promotion agency for Bucks County. The tourism office, with more than 450 tourism/hospitality partners throughout Bucks County, promotes all there is to see and do to potential visitors and residents. In addition to consumer travel, Visit Bucks County targets sports tournaments, motor coach groups, meetings, special events and weddings. For more information on VBC activities call 215-639-0300, visit VisitBucksCounty.com or stop by the Bucks County Visitor Center located at 3207 Street Road in Bensalem (adjacent to the entrance to PARX Casino).