Colorado’s Longest Running Craft Beer Festival Hits the 20 Year Mark
The 20th Annual Keystone Bluegrass and Beer Festival Features a New Homebrew Hub, #KeystoneBestBrew Contest, New Belgium Fat Tire Collaborations and a Bike-In Cinema
This is a milestone year for the Keystone Neighbourhood Company. The team is celebrating the 20th anniversary of their most popular summer event – the Keystone Bluegrass and Beer Festival – Aug. 6-7 with more than 40 breweries pouring over 150 varieties of craft brews in River Run Village.
“This is an incredibly special summer for us,” says Maja Russer, Keystone Neighbourhood Company’s director of events and marketing. “Since we started the Keystone Bluegrass and Beer Festival 20 years ago, this event has grown into one of our biggest festivals of the summer and the craft beer movement, especially here in Colorado, has exploded. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Bluegrass and Beer Festival, we’re throwing a bigger, better party this summer with the legends of bluegrass music, a new homebrew event, a new beer maker’s dinner and special events with New Belgium.”
The weekend kicks off on Thursday, Aug. 4 with the free New Belgium Bike-In Cinema featuring an oldie but goodie, “The Goonies,” in River Run Village. Grab the bikes and the entire family and enjoy a movie night courtesy of New Belgium under the stars in the River Run Village. Things kick up a notch on Friday in Warren Station with the Eat, Drink and Pick event featuring New Belgium beer paired with six delectable dishes from local legend Chef Chris Rybak. Tickets are $55 for this unique event that’s part bluegrass concert, part culinary event with a modern twist on the traditional beer maker’s dinner.
At 1 p.m. on Saturday, the kegs will be tapped, the bottles opened, the cans cracked and the 20th year of the Bluegrass and Beer Festival will officially be underway in River Run Village at Keystone Resort. Raise your glass and tap your toes to the legendary lineup of free bluegrass music:
- Jeff Scroggins and Colorado
- T Sisters
- Lonely Heartstrings Band
- Mason Town
- Mandolin Orange
- Tim O’Brien
- Peter Rowan Band
- Larry Keel Experience
“When I think of a perfect Colorado summer, it’s sipping a Colorado craft beer listening to bluegrass music outdoors with a view of the Rocky Mountains. That’s the Keystone Bluegrass and Beer Festival,” says Russer.
The Keystone Bluegrass and Beer Festival is happening 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 6-7 with free music and admission. A Beer Glass Pass for craft beer samplings of more than 150 varieties is $40 (in advance) for a one-day unlimited pass and $75 for a full-weekend, two-day pass. Day-of tickets will be $45 and $80 respectively.
Warren Station will be hopping with free beer seminars and the Homebrew Hub experience all weekend, including:
1-5 p.m., Aug. 6-7
Enhance your homebrewing skills, meet other homebrewers, share tips for beer-making and learn from expert homebrewers. CO-Brew will demonstrate all-grain brewing by making 10 gallon batches of beer at the festival. Then, taste the CO-Brew flavors at the festival as part of the Beer Glass Pass.
noon, Aug. 6
How do you improve upon a classic? New Belgium partnered with five different breweries to brew their own versions of Fat Tire, one of the most popular craft choices for Amber Ale lovers in the country. Taste the difference and sample the collaboration brews of the classic sweet, biscuity and caramel malt taste of Fat Tire.
noon, Aug. 7
America, and definitely Colorado, is drinking up the homebrew craze. If you’re already creating your own brews or a newbie venturing into “do it yourself” beer, this seminar conducted by the American Homebrewers Association, will help you hone your skills.
Once you’ve sampled, don’t forget to rock your vote for the #KeystoneBestBrew. Post a photo of your favorite brew on social with the hashtag #KeystoneBestBrew and the beer with the most social media posts will be crowned “Best Brew” of the festival and wins complimentary weekend accommodations at the 2017 festival. Plus, you’ll get free prints of any photo you post to social media at the Insta-Print stations throughout the festival when you use the hashtags: #keystonebestbrew #keystonefestivals or #keystonemoments.
Kiddos will love the Kidtopia KidsZone with fun activities, such as the Kids Craft sessions face painting along with bungee trampolines and mini golf at the Kidtopia Play Park.
Plus, all that beer sampling is for a great cause. Like all of the Keystone Neighbourhood Company events, the Bluegrass and Beer Festival will donate a portion of the proceeds to the High Country Conservation Center, a local non-profit that focuses on waste reduction, energy efficiency and clean energy, as well as sustainable food production.