Emily Hildebrand

(Rock Hill, S.C.) — The city of Rock Hill provided a free shuttle bus called the Jingle Hop Stop to take people to different breweries, bars and restaurants on Saturdays throughout the month of December.

The service was connected to the city’s annual ChristmasVille event, which is a long-held tradition in Rock Hill, but this year it looked a little different.

“This year (the shuttle bus) is going all month long. It’s not just a weekend anymore,” said Brittany Kelly, one of the co-chairs of ChristmasVille and co-owner of The Mercantile, a general store and event space near downtown.

“Normally ChristmasVille is just a four day festival and with the pandemic, we obviously had to change a few things. So we expanded it. We made it from Nov. 27 through Dec. 25,” said Evan Goetz, the marketing manager for ChristmasVille.

In years past, there was a “Holly Trolley” that would, on one day, take guests from place to place downtown.

“We thought, what would be a really cool way to do that this year in the midst of a pandemic and with the expansion of the festival,” Goetz said. “So we decided to rent a bus and call it the Jingle Hop Stop.”

The bus took people to seven different locations throughout the downtown area, on Saturdays beginning 4 p.m. at Dust Off Brewing and circled around from there to the other stops until 11 p.m.

The locations also included Slow Play Brewing, Legal Remedy Brewing, The Rock Hill Sports and Event Center, Tattooed Brews, Rock Hill Brewing Company and The Roasting Company.

Those stops included other nearby shops and restaurants people could also visit, said Goetz. For example, when people stop at Dust Off Brewing, they also have the opportunity to go to The Mercantile to shop or to Knowledge Perk to get a cup of coffee.

“It takes you out to places that are really accessible,” Goetz said. “You don’t have to hop in your car and drive around, you can just hop on the bus.”

On the first night of the shuttle service, Annmarie Collins, a volleyball coach, took the bus and said it was very easy to use.

“There were signs showing where the bus would pick up and drop off at each stop and since it’s free that makes it a lot easier,” said Collins. “It’s not only a neat thing to do on a Saturday night off with friends…but it also ensures people’s safety.”

Some of the stops included on the Jingle Hop Bus are all also apart of the YoCo Brew Trail, which is a digital event put on by Visit York County. Once you check in at six of the participating breweries, using the Visit York County app, you get a free T-shirt.

The city of Rock Hill hoped the service would bring more attention to local businesses and the county brew trail.

For more information about the Jingle Hop Stop or other ChristmasVille events, you can download the ChristmasVille app or visit their website.