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Free the Hops brings Huntsville its sixth annual Rocket City Brewfest

The sixth annual Rocket City Brewfest returns to the Historic Huntsville Depot and Roundhouse on May 9th and 10th.
The sixth annual Rocket City Brewfest returns to the Historic Huntsville Depot and Roundhouse on May 9th and 10th.
Free the Hops

The Huntsville Chapter of Free the Hops welcomes craft beer lovers back to the Historic Huntsville Depot and Roundhouse (320 Church Street, Huntsville) for the sixth installment of Rocket City Brewfest on Friday, May 9 and Saturday, May 10.

The Rocket City Brewfest (RCBF) is an annual fundraiser for Free the Hops that has earned itself a reputation for being one of the finest craft beer experiences in the state of Alabama. Our great state has a wealth of extraordinary breweries producing some world-class beer, and RCBF showcases these fantastic offerings by placing a heavy emphasis on all things local. Alabama beers may be the focus, but this festival certainly does not discriminate. Since the passing of the Gourmet Beer Bill and Gourmet Bottle Bill, some of the best regional, national and international breweries have gravitated to Alabama and they will of course be a part of the action at RCBF. In the end, hundreds of delicious brews from near and far, along with some ciders and meads, will be scattered throughout the grounds of the Historic Huntsville Depot and Roundhouse all for your sampling pleasure.

In addition to amazing craft beer, Rocket City Brewfest also celebrates North Alabama's culture by supporting its local restaurants and artists. To quell any cravings you may have throughout the event, a wide variety of local, craft beer-friendly eateries and establishments will be on-site as food vendors to provide attendees with tasty fest food and non-alcoholic refreshments. Both sessions of the festival will also feature live musical entertainment from the following acts: The Soft Revenge and Bourbon & Shamrocks on May 9, and The Dawn Osborne Band and The Dozens on May 10.

Advance tickets for the Rocket City Brewfest can be purchased for $38 (plus fees) per person, and you can arrange yours online at Ticketmaster or by visiting participating retail locations. If tickets last to the day of the event, they will be available for $45 each at the gate. Your ticket gets you access to unlimited beer samples at one session**, a commemorative tasting glass, and access to the live entertainment. Designated drivers are also welcome to attend for a reduced ticket price of $10 each. Proceeds from ticket sales go to benefit Free the Hops to aid in their mission of bringing better beer to Alabama.

I have been to beer festivals all over the country and I must say that the Rocket City Brewfest is easily one of my favorites. It is big enough to always have an abundant amount of new and interesting brews, but small enough to not leave you feeling overwhelmed or that you are missing out on something. The event is organized incredibly well, the attendance numbers are near perfect, and you will be hard-pressed to find a better group of people to drink with during an Alabama spring day or evening. If you even remotely enjoy craft beer and will be anywhere near North Alabama on the weekend of the festival, you will be doing yourself a great disservice if you do not attend RCBF. With that said, make sure to arrange your tickets as soon as possible and I hope to see you all at this year's Rocket City Brewfest. Prost!

(** ABC regulations do not allow for unlimited free samples, so you will be required to pay a penny per pour. This is done on the honor system, so you can throw a couple quarters in the bucket at the first station you visit and that should cover you for the entire festival. The money collected from the penny buckets will go to benefit a local charity.)