Written by Joshua Swainston for weeklyvolcano.com
What magic fermented yeast, grain and water can become when proportioned correctly. Pilsners, lagers, Hefeweizens, ales (of all sorts); wheats, barleys, stouts and all the other delicious brews.
It’s enough to make a grown man cry. The triumph of the ages: BEER.
To celebrate the fabulous concoction the third annual Tacoma Craft Beer Fest will take place Sept. 3. This year the Craft Beer Fest will go down at the 21st Street Park on Dock Street. Those who purchase a ticket and gain entry receive a 5.5-ounce tester glass and 10 drink tokens to sample the plethora of brews that await. Additional drink tokens are $1.50. All profits this year will go to support the Boy and Girls Club of South Puget Sound.
But it’s not ALL about beer. Some of the things that go great WITH beer will also be on hand. Assorted grub will be available to soak up the alcohol. And rock, bluegrass and acoustic music acts are slated to play so that you can bust out some drunken gyration.
For the past two years the Tacoma Craft Beer Fest has made habit of bringing together amazing brewers and allowing the people of Tacoma to sample their creations.
“Tacoma Craft Beer Festival started as an idea Chris Miller of The Red Hot had one afternoon while talking with myself and Bennett Thurmon. From there we decided to give it a shot and bring Tacoma a real large-scale beer festival,” says Roxanna Wolfe, an organizer of the festival along with Miller and Thurmon.
This year the Tacoma Craft Beer Fest has moved from its original home at the Foss Waterway Seaport building to a location further down Dock Street – the 21st Street Park.
“This year, to try something new, we moved our date from October to September and relocated to the other end of Dock Street in the new 21st Street Park,” explains Wolfe. “The idea occurred to Bennett when we were walking the esplanade one afternoon. The views from this outdoor venue really showcase how spectacular our city has become. (The new location offers) Visions of the old and the new Tacoma, easily seen for the festival-goers to capture and enjoy.”
With the Craft Beer Fest looming just over the horizon, the Volcano reached out to a few expected participants to see what they have planned. From Wingman Brewers, right here in Downtown Tacoma, to Stone Brewing Co. in Escondido, Calif. everyone involved is excited.
Lazy Boy Brewing Co.’s owner and brewer Shawn Loring is just one of many stoked to be involved with the event. “We are bringing our second annual Oktoberfest beer this year the event,” says Loring. “We brew it with three different malts and local hops.”
7 Seas Brewing, like years past, will also be an eager participant in the Craft Beer Fest. “We will be bringing our British Pale Ale and our summer seasonal Rude Parrot India Pale Ale,” offers owner Mike Runion. “We want to enjoy and squeeze every last drop out of summer possible. So to do so we brought a selection perfect for a awesome day of beer drinking on the grass with sunshine on our backs.”
And, naturally, Tacoma’s own Wingman Brewing will be well represented. “We’re particularly proud that we’re bringing beers brewed in the Historic Tacoma Brewery District. Tacoma is a city with a great beer history and we’re proud to continue it as the first all production brewery in Tacoma since 1979,” says Ken Thoburn. “You can find beers in many places in Tacoma and on a rare occasion outside Tacoma. We’re a brand new brewery so this is our first year at TCBF, but we’ll be repping the 253eer.”
This is just a small selection of the breweries attending. Additional brewers you’ll have the chance to familiarize yourself with include MT Head, New Belgium, Silver City, Trade Route and 30-plus others.
My prediction: Crowds of sophisticated beer connoisseurs will swarm like it’s a college frat party. The 5.5-ounce testers will flow like the Thea Foss Waterway.
Let us show the world that Tacoma loves beer (like it needs reminding).
Entry into the fest is $10 for designated drivers. There will be plenty of taxi’s standing by around the Fest. Also there will be regular shuttle busses running between the Fest and the Sound Transit Parking Garage.