Lucky Girl Brewing Crossroads owners Jerry McCoy and Jeff Wescott have their eyes set on McHenry County as their business rapidly expands.
The company began as a contract brewer in Pennsylvania and operates two breweries in Michigan, including Lucky Girl Brewing Crossroads in Paw Paw, Michigan. McCoy and Wescott now want to open a handful of locations across the country, including one in Richmond and one in McHenry.
The investment will be more than
$3 million between the two locations and create at least 20 jobs at each, McCoy said.
The company didn’t ask for incentives for the Richmond location, but McCoy and Wescott are discussing possibilities with the city of McHenry, McCoy said.
McHenry has owned the vacant property on the Fox River near Riverside Drive since 2014. City Council members are expected to consider plans for the brewery during a meeting in August.
“This is the type of development we all want to see in our community,” McHenry Mayor Wayne Jett said. “We have worked on this project for nearly a year to make sure when this comes to the council it will be an easy decision.”
The Richmond location is set to open at the corner of Routes 12 and 31 in a 4,000-square-foot building that the Lucky Girl owners will remodel. The site will operate as a taproom instead of a larger-scale brewery, McCoy said.
“We will have a one-barrel system to do brewing demonstrations, homebrew classes and what I call the theater of brewing,” he said.
McHenry is in the process of working with the company to open a 10,000-square-foot facility on the Fox River that will brew beers and blend wines.
Lucky Girl brands of wine, beer and liquor are available at a variety of retail stores, as well.
Richmond’s Lucky Girl location will occupy a building on an 8-acre parcel of land, and McCoy and Wescott hope to offer outdoor music, a large patio space, a fire pit and different community events, such as a farmers market and activities for kids.
Lucky Girl’s location in Michigan offers events such as trivia night, line dancing and karaoke, and the Richmond location is expected to be similar.
“We are trying to bring the community onto the site,” McCoy said. “We view ourselves as very interactive with the public. We aren’t just another alehouse.”
Richmond Village President Craig Kunz said he looks forward to working with Lucky Girl and the investment in the community.
“We are eager to see them come in,” he said. “Richmond is becoming more and more of a destination location, and this is an important corner.”
The food also will set the space apart. Michigan’s Lucky Girl is known for its barbecue and wood-fired pizza. Richmond’s menu will offer the same items, but it will ramp up its offerings with higher-end salads and other meals.
“We don’t have a definitive menu yet, but we just hired a head of operations that has a culinary background,” McCoy said. “We want to put a pretty unique menu into Richmond where we will bring a lot of the different foods.”
McCoy and Wescott said they hope to open Lucky Girl in Richmond by the end of September.