By Timothy Malcolm For the Times Herald-Record
It’s nearly February, and there hasn’t been much snow this winter in Roscoe.
That’s a weird feeling, especially for the folks at the Roscoe Beer Co., who are planning the first Trout Town Winter Festival. They could be staring at a winter festival on green grass, in relatively balmy temperatures for late January.
“We would just call it a mid-summer winter fest,” said Shannon Feeney, director of events and promotions for the Roscoe Beer Co. “A ‘no-snow’ snow festival.”
In case it’s a no-snow festival, organizers plan to have wheeled carriage rides and lawn games like bean-bag toss and beer pong. But the hope is a little of that white stuff will be covering the ground Saturday afternoon at the Roscoe Beer Co. Then all the planned winter fun can happen without a hitch.
That fun includes horse-drawn carriage rides through the snowy wintry scenes of mountainous northern Sullivan County, plus snowshoeing, snowball fights and a contest to determine the best snowman.
While the festival begins at noon, the carriage rides start at 12:30 p.m. and cost adults $4 (children younger than 8 are free). The rides last 15-20 minutes.
While kids may get a kick out of a horse-drawn carriage ride, adults are sure to get kicked by the two beers the Roscoe brewery plans to release Saturday. Its Barley Bonfire is a Wee Heavy beer, light in color but heavy in flavor, Feeney said, laced with a smoky taste. Joining it on the taps Saturday will be Roscoe’s Barrel-aged Two-Headed Stout, a remix of the favorite Roscoe stout, aged for 2 months in oak barrels.
The Rockland House will be crafting up pulled-pork sliders, plus chili and soup, and classic rock cover band Ruckus will be playing starting at 12:30. After the festival, the party heads inside to the brewery, which will host a karaoke night and has plenty of table games.
Shuttles will be taking people from the brewery to downtown Roscoe for parking and, for a little extra winter fun, a little ice skating at the outdoor rink – which despite the lack of snow and winter chill, is open.
“We want people to see that there’s always something to do here,” Feeney said, noting Roscoe’s central location for trips back to college, or to Binghamton, or for a weekend mountain getaway. Still, she added, “There are a lot of people who haven’t ventured into Roscoe.”