This weekend is the annual Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival. It’s happening on Saturday, May 3, from noon to 6pm, in an area that runs along Walnut from Broad to 19th and 18th from Locust to Sansom. It’s free (mostly). There’ll be plenty of food, with everyone from Avance, Butcher & Singer and Barclay Prime to Shake Shack, HipCityVeg, Luke’s Lobster and Sbraga offering up bites for the crowds. There’ll be food trucks (like the Tot Cart and The Cow and the Curd) and cocktail tastings, free cotton candy and fun for the kids, a first look at V Street (the new restaurant from the team behind Vedge) and, as always, it should be a lot of fun.
But there’s no way you’re going to get through the entire thing without, at some point, running across the construction site pictured above. And that construction site (which will someday house a giant Cheesecake Factory) is what leads us to our contest today–the winner of which will win a pair of VIP passes that’ll get them into the VIP Lounge at 18th and Walnut where they’ll be able to step away from the maddening crowds, have a glass of wine, a cold beer or a cocktail in peace, and get some snacks from various Stephen Starr restaurants.
Interested? Of course you are. And here's all you have to do...
As noted, the tear-down pictured above (at 15th and Walnut) is being done to make way for a giant, shiny glass box which will, when completed, be home to the first Cheesecake Factory to grace Philadelphia since the last Cheesecake Factory left...well, decades ago, I think. There are some people (like Cheesecake Factory executives and future Midwestern tourists, one supposes) who are thrilled by this news. And there are others (like us, and all other right-thinking Americans) who are more than a little horrified at such prime real estate being taken up by an operation which serves loaded baked potato tots and Cuban spring rolls, and considers its Bistro Shrimp Pasta (which clocks in at 919mg of sodium, 78g saturated fat and nearly 3,000 calories, earning it the title of Worst Food In America) to be something that human beings ought to actually eat.
That said, the Cheesecake Factory is coming. There's nothing we can do about that. But the building which will someday house it? It doesn't yet have any other tenants. (Yes, the clothing company UNIQLO was supposed to be taking up some space, but they found a different home.) So what we're asking is that you choose something to occupy some (or all) of the remaining space in the new building which will, in some way, mitigate the future culinary evil perpetrated by the Cheesecake Factory.
You have until tomorrow at 4pm to make your pitch in the comments section. Best solution to this real estate conundrum gets the pair of VIP passes. And the contest begins...
Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival [Official]