Ken Cage of Airplane Repo has a dream.
In it, hundreds and hundreds of Delaware Countians are in the middle of a relatively remote parking lot in Chester Township. They’re drinking beer, tossing footballs, throwing Frisbees and watching TV. And, it’s the biggest, baddest, tailgate blowout he’s ever seen.
Hang in there with Cage for a little while and you’ll learn that his ideas often have a way to become realized, take a certain reality show featuring repossessing airplanes as an example.
Also the idea for a beer named after his catchphrase, Yachtsee.
Even the gargantuan tailgate party, scheduled, by the way, for Sept. 16, the night of Airplane Repo’s Season 3 finale, with a confirmed appearance by Tony Bruno and the official unveiling of the Yachtsee brew.
“I want every single person in Delaware County there,” Cage said. “I want everybody there because I want it to be an event. We’re going to open it up indoor and outdoor. We want it to be a tailgate event.”
The festivities formally start at 7 p.m. with a showing of the season’s last Airplane Repo on the walls of the cavernous brewery.
“I want it to surprise me how big it gets,” Cage said. “If we can get 400 or 500 people there … Now, this is an event.”
The road to the pending tailgate began months ago with an off-the-cuff conversation between Cage and Cal Driscoll, whom he describes as “a friend of mine since I was a kid.”
Driscoll had worked with Two Stones Pub, including Michael Contreras, who’s 2SP Brewing’s spokesman.
“Have you ever thought of your own beer?” Driscoll asked Cage, whose response was a laugh. “What are you doing Wednesday at 3 o’clock? Ok, come to the brewery.”
Cage shows up, gets a tour and meets head brewer Bob Barrar.
“I’m like, ‘Holy smokes,’” Cage said of meeting mulitple-World Beer Cups winner Barrar. “When it comes to brewing, he is a stonecold genius.”
Contreras was there. “Everybody got along so well,” he said. “The whole conversation was around Delco — the entire time.”
He shared their commonalities.
“Ken, like us, is trying to represent Delco and put it on the map,” he said. “He’s not compromising who he is. I think that’s why we (all) got into business — have some fun, do something that represents us and make the people proud.”
Eventually, they started to talk about beer. At first, they wanted to call it Airplane Repo beer, but Cage didn’t have the rights to that. What he did own was his catchphrase, “Yachtsee,” so they went with that.
Cage set the parameters.
“Guys, I’m from Delco,” he warned. “It can’t be heavy. It can’t be fruity. No fruit, no wood, no pumpkin. It’s got to be a Delco-type beer.”
Barrar answered: “Ok. I got it.”
Weeks later, Cage received a call it was finished.
“It’s a bitter ale, which isn’t bitter really,” he said. “I went (and) it really is delicious.”
So, now, he wants to share it with a few hundred of his closest friends, as he’s picked 2SP as the spot for Airplane Repo’s season finale.
“(It’s) a couple of guys that really love Delaware County,” Cage said. “Delaware County’s awesome. If you don’t love it, whatever… Delco’s the best. I’m telling you — Delco. We’re going to be Delco’ed up.”
And, to accommodate, Contreras said 2SP will have 12 to 13 beers on tap in addition to Yachtsee and Delco Lager and pizza and hoagies will be available for guests.
“We’re doing it up,” Contreras said. “I think it’s going to be a fun event. It’s going to be an all-around celebration of Delco.”