Fact: Craft beer attracts crowds.
Proof: The third annual Naperville Winter Ale Fest.
The popular event drew a few thousand brew enthusiasts to Frontier Park on a balmy February afternoon to enjoy samples of winter seasonals from 65 brewers.
Under tents and around fire pits, tasters tried more than 130 different beers as well as a new offering this year -- hard hot cider. Five food trucks kept crowds fed with grilled cheese, pizza and tacos, while many tasters donned a beer-fest staple, the pretzel necklace, to clear their taste buds between drinks.
Musicians and an ice sculptor kept everyone entertained at what organizers said is the state's only large-scale outdoor beer fest in the winter.
The festival benefited the district's fundraising arm of the Naperville Park District, the Naperville Parks Foundation.