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Profits starting to flow for year-old beer delivery service

Jon Fox, one of the owners of Beer Runners in Wesley Chapel, delivers a keg shortly after the business’ opening just over a year ago. The owners are looking to branch out and are want to help others start up franchises of Beer Runners.

KAINAZ AMARIA | Times (2009)

Jon Fox, one of the owners of Beer Runners in Wesley Chapel, delivers a keg shortly after the business’ opening just over a year ago. The owners are looking to branch out and are want to help others start up franchises of Beer Runners.

WESLEY CHAPEL — The owners of Beer Runners delivery service have learned a few things about Pasco County residents in the past year.

Folks in the Seven Oaks and New River subdivisions prefer kegs of beer, while the Chapel Pines and Quail Hollow denizens usually opt for six packs.

Monday Night Football is not a big drinking occasion locally, but Halloween sure is.

One party celebrated the last night of October by ordering three kegs in three hours.

"It was a costume party, but there was a lack of costumes on quite a few people," said Jon Fox, who opened Beer Runners with his wife and two other couples last New Year's Eve.

The idea for a beer delivery service hit the six friends when they ran out of brew one night and no one was sober enough to drive to the store for more.

Their business, which charges $5 for deliveries within 3 miles of the store and 65 cents per mile after that, started breaking even at the end of 2009, and any profits are reinvested right back in to the company. All of the owners still have their day jobs, though.

"We were worried about going into business with friends, but everything's been great," Fox said.

They found their rhythm. Fox and co-owner James Matrisciano man the counters at night while their wives run the shows at home. One of the founding couples, Wilson and Polly Palacios, took an out-of-state job offer but remain involved in business decisions from afar.

"We're all pretty easy-going," Fox said.

So easy-going, in fact, that when they drop off a keg or some six packs at a party, they often get invited to hang out.

"You always get the people who want you to stay and drink with them, but we don't," Fox said.

The delivery service has expanded its offerings since opening last year.

For $20, customers can rent a beer pong table for the weekend (ask a college kid if you don't know how to play).

Beer Runners also now rent "kegerators," mini refrigerators outfitted with a tap on top and a full-sized keg inside.

The kegerators run $50 for a week and have been a hit locally at college football games, parties, and of course, weddings.

Beer Runners is located at 30036 State Road 54, Wesley Chapel. Call 813-991-7900 or visit www.usbeerrunners.com

fast facts

Beer Runners

Beer Runners is at 30036 State Road 54, Wesley Chapel. Call 813-991-7900 or visit www.usbeerrunners.com

Profits starting to flow for year-old beer delivery service 01/01/10 [Last modified: Friday, January 1, 2010 7:13pm]
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