July in the state of Michigan brings about the sounds of summer - the crack of the bat, the popping of newly-legalized fireworks, and the clang of bottles and kegs as brewers and hop heads congregate in Depot Town in Ypsilanti for the Summer Beer Festival appropriately solidifying July as Michigan craft beer month. The 15th Annual Summer Beer Festival, hosted by the Michigan Brewers Guild, will take place Friday and Saturday, July 27th and 28th, in Riverside Park.
Brewers from all over the state will provide a lineup of beer samplings to thousands of attendees looking to taste the most eclectic of summer brews. Refreshing summer ales, spicy wheat beers, and citrusy IPA's are sure to headline the offerings at a festival where patrons are trying to beat the heat. More than 450 beers will be made available from 60+ Michigan brewers, many of them exclusive to Summer Beer Festival. But don't get too lost in the array of ales. The festival organizers will have water stations positioned throughout the grounds to encourage beer lovers to stay hydrated.
Food offerings hosted by brewpubs and other local establishments will provide all the variety of fare one can handle. The Traffic Jam and Snug cheese plate, Slow's BBQ, and Arcadia's popular bacon mac 'n cheese (get it while it lasts) stole the show at the 2011 event, and there are sure to be more heavy hitters to please the palate between beer samplings. Live bands and events such as the celebratory firkin tapping will also provide entertainment for patrons.
On the business side of things, tickets for the event went on sale on May 1st, and availability is limited, so be sure to act quickly. Tickets to attend SBF on Friday from 5-9 PM are $30 ($35 at the gate if available), and Saturday attendance from 1-6 PM will run you $35 ($40 at the gate if available). You can purchase tickets online or visit The Mash to get a list of ticket outlets. Tickets for designated drivers are also available online as well as at the gate for $5, but the driver must be with a group of festival goers and is not allowed to drink. Tickets for regular attendance include 10 drink tokens, each worth a 3 oz. sample of vast selection of beers. Additional tokens will be available once you run out for $.50 each. Remember, all attendees must be 21 years of age and, as always, respect beer!
Hope to see you there!