Microbreweries to take center stage at Glass City Beer FestWritten by Staff Reports | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Editor’s Note: Updated to note that parking is $5 per car, not free as originally reported.
By Dave Kubacki
On Feb. 28, there will be plenty of reasons for Glass City residents to raise their mugs in celebration as the eighth annual Glass City Beer Festival takes over the Lucas County Recreation Center.
This year’s event will feature 45 microbreweries and more than 224 total tastes. Attendees will have the opportunity to tip pints from their favorite local breweries such as Maumee Bay Brewing Company, Great Black Swamp Brewing Company and Sugar Ridge Brewery. Regional and nationally renowned breweries including Great Lakes Brewing Company, Hoppin’ Frog, Deschutes and Stone will also be tapping beers from their extensive portfolios.
Revenue from the event will help support the Arc of Lucas County and the Northwest Ohio Hemophilia Foundation.
Northwest Ohio Hemophilia Foundation Executive Director Carla Wells said the event has prospered because it provides a unique opportunity to try a lot of different beers and styles.
“A lot of these microbrews can be costly compared to your domestic/tap beers so it’s a great place to try them without spending a lot of money on a six-pack that you may not enjoy,” Wells said. “This event has been at the forefront of the microbrew explosion in the area and has become the premier place to go and try different styles from across the country.”
Tonya Scherf, Arc of Toledo’s Executive Director, said the Glass City Beer Festival is a great opportunity for some winter relief.
“The timing of the event has certainly helped its success,” Scherf said. “It’s at the end of February so it’s before the push for St. Patrick’s Day. It’s also in the dead of winter when people are sick of being stuck inside and are looking for something fun to do. It’s also an opportunity for people to give back for disabilities they aren’t sure how to help.”
If success is measured by attendance, then Wells and Scherf can sleep well at night as the event has grown 15 percent to 20 percent each year, with more than 2,000 in attendance last year. The Glass City Beer Festival has become so popular that it needed a larger space to accommodate the growing crowds, so for the second year, it will be held at the Lucas County Recreation Center.
“It was a great decision to move to the Lucas County Recreation Center,” Wells said. “It has a lot more room to accommodate the crowd and has allowed us to nearly double the number of breweries in attendance.”
New to the Glass City Beer Festival this year will be the VIP program. Those willing to pay a little extra will be able to access the festival an hour early and try exclusive beers only available to VIPs. According to Wells, the VIP experience will be a great opportunity for connoisseurs to try more limited pours.
“We are limiting VIP ticket sales so the event won’t be very crowded at that time,” Wells said. “Several of the breweries will be offering a unique taste that will only be available during that hour. Right now, we have 34 VIP exclusive tastes that will only be available during the first hour for VIPs.”
General admission tickets for the event, which will run from 7-11 p.m. Feb. 28, can be purchased in advance for $30 at the Anderson’s Customer Service Desks or $35 at the door. VIP tickets will be $50 in advance or $55 at the door. With the price of admission, attendees will get 12 taste tickets good for 3-ounce pours. Additional taste tickets will be available for $1 each or 6 for $5. Parking for the event is $5 per car.
Tags: and Stone, Anderson's Customer Service Desks, Deschutes, Glass City Beer Festival, Great Black Swamp Brewing Company and Sugar Ridge Brewery, Great Lakes Brewing Company, Hoppin' Frog, Lucas County Recreation Center, Maumee Bay Brewing Company, microbreweries, Northwest Ohio Hemophilia Foundation, Northwest Ohio Hemophilia Foundation Executive Director Carla Wells