This was my first time at Willow Island for BratFest, and I too like it better than Hilldale location. Better than I thought I would. The access is great (bikeable or free parking/short walk) with lots of sitting room. Logistically set-up very well. I like the brat tally on the way in, but they should have a counter in the serving tent as well. We were there Friday for dinner (arguably the best weather) and waited no longer than five minutes for perfectly fried brats. Music, not the greatest, but thought I heard that the bands donated their performance fees...(?). The plastic baggies were smart. I don't know if it was their intention, but you have a trash bag when you're done. I bet it's a helluva lot cleaner than having loose paper wraps, napkins, and trays blowing in the wind. The carny rides, meh...the worst thing about that is the kids begging to go on rides. BTW, my 13-month old had her first brat...she loved it and had I not had to deal with the diaper aftermath, we would have gone back. Overall BratFest grade: B.
Two improvements my party talked about... 1) Condiments... perhaps an exotic condiment tent, too. Offer up stuff like varieties of mustard, pineapple salsa, BBQ sauce, chocolate sauce (hey now, that last came from a 4 year old, and besides Brats are in the sweet meat catagory). 2) For the drive-thru crowd--and there are plenty of them who order a cupla' dozen for freezing then leave-- why not offer a drive through tent? How hard would that be? They have the golf carts to truck 'em over.
BTW, the longest-ass [insert food]Fest line, hands-down, is bi-anually in Monroe for cheese curds. They gotta do something about that.