Crafting beer lovers one festival at a time

Craft beer lovers get ready, the East Kootenay Beer Festival is coming and it will be bigger than ever.

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Craft beer lovers get ready, the East Kootenay Beer Festival is coming and it will be bigger than ever.

The festival, in its fourth year, will be held on June 20 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort ski area. This year, event organizers have gone all out, planning to give guests an unforgettable weekend in the beautiful Columbia Valley.

“We will have over 70 beers for guests to sample and several new breweries presenting unique and seasonal brews, including Hoyne Brewing and Moon Under Water,” Charlotte Moos, Fairmont’s Special Events Coordinator, said. “To top it off, we also have our food truck on site serving up traditional beer lover’s eats like bratwursts and authentic German pretzels to keep people well fed.”

For the first time, Fairmont Hot Springs Resort’s annual Long Drive Competition will run simultaneously with the festival. Youth and seniors will tee up three golf balls and attempt to hit them as far as possible down the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort Airport’s runway.

The contest is on June 19 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and costs $15 for adults and $10 for children, with all proceeds going to the Columbia Valley Golf Trail Junior Tour, which helps to help develop young golfers. Along with the chance of winning some cool prizes, all participants will receive a two-for-one coupon for the barbecue party at Mountainside Clubhouse, which includes live music by Ted Alexander from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.

“We decided the Long Drive Contest would be a great way to kick off the whole weekend,” Moos said.

Another new addition to the festival is this year’s after party, held at the ski chalet. Local band Valley Forged will have the crowd rocking out for the remainder of the night. All festival guests are invited to attend the party, enjoy some of their favourite beers and take in the mountain views.

Individual tickets will cost $49 and the festival will also offer two different packages for guests looking to stay for the weekend. The lodge package includes two nights of accommodation, two tickets to the festival and unlimited access to Canada’s largest natural mineral hot springs.

The camping package includes two tickets to the festival and a two night stay at Spruce Grove RV Park and Campground. Moos said the accommodation packages and the additional events held over the weekend will encourage guests to spend more time in the valley.

“It encourages people to come here not only for the festival but for the whole weekend.” Moos said. “We want the festival to be a special part of their summer vacation plans.”

Tickets are still available. To purchase tickets, or for more information on the event call 1-800-663-4979 or visit www.fairmonthotsprings.com/4th-annual-beerfest.