The popular Third Thursdays on State Street will return for the 2022 season with outdoor dining, extended shopping hours, live music, children’s activities, pop-up vendors, and more every Third Thursday from May 19th through October 20th.

The first Third Thursday of the season will be next Thursday, May 19th. The 100 blocks of East and West State Street, in addition the 100 blocks of North and South Union Street, will be closed to traffic from 5pm to 10pm. In the event of a weather-related cancellation, every effort will be made to reschedule the street closure for the following evening (Friday).

Restaurant and business owners and community members are all looking forward to the return of Kennett Collaborative’s Third Thursday events. “Third Thursdays bring the community together and support restaurants and small businesses on State Street,” says Kennett Collaborative Executive Director Bo Wright. “We know everyone has missed these events over the past two years. In 2020 we were able to work with the Borough to arrange weekend-long street closures to allow for socially distanced outdoor dining throughout the summer months, in addition to building the West State Street parklet. Street closures were impossible last summer because of the PennDOT bridge project on Baltimore Pike, so the pivot was a pedestrian walkway in the parking spots to enable restaurants to utilize the sidewalk for outdoor dining—but obviously none of these solutions replaced the much-loved Third Thursday events.”

Byrsa Bistro, GFG, Grain Craft Bar + Kitchen, Lily Asian Cuisine, La Verona, Portabellos, and Verbena BYOB will all set up tables for outdoor dining on State Street (reservations are recommended) and merchants will have extended shopping hours until 8pm. Each month, various vendors, organizations, and activities will also set up on State Street.

On May 19th, kids can enjoy balloon twisting by balloon artist Lahtesha Antonio of JJL United Events from 5:30pm to 7pm. YoungMoms will also have a beautiful floral-themed photo booth set up at the corner of State and Union Streets (under the clock tower). Pop-up vendors for the evening will include TEXTILE, Paiya, and Hilltop Flower Design.

GFG will offer outdoor as well as indoor seating until 7pm. “We will be offering our Greek specialty desserts, my family’s recipes with our authentic Greek cuisine, and a full coffee bar with decaf drinks as an option as well,” says GFG’s Sophia Kotanidis.

Also on the west side of State Street, Grain will have outdoor dining, music, and special drinks, including wine and beer to go to bring to BYOB restaurants. “We’ll have a DJ out front spinning cool tunes, as well as a series of special cocktails inspired by the businesses and landmarks of Kennett—the first of which will be available this coming Thursday,” says Grain KSQ General Manager Ryan Wilson. “We are first-come first-serve through the summer and will also be offering our great selection of draft and canned beers and wine bottles to accompany meals at BYOB locations.”

Other great eateries in Kennett Square that offer outdoor seating in the evening include Braeloch Brewing, Café de Thai, Kennett Brewing Company, Letty’s Tavern, and The Creamery.

“Kennett Collaborative (then Historic Kennett Square) started Third Thursdays in 2014,” says Wright. “It was the first large-scale placemaking program in the Borough and was designed to support State Street restaurants and shops—but it was also a proof of concept, creating  a car-free public space for people to enjoy. In addition to being successful dining events, Third Thursdays introduced Kennett to the power of placemaking. The community immediately embraced these events, and we’re delighted to finally be able to bring them back again.”