Celebrate local beer at Spring Ale Fest

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January 30, 2012 // UPDATED 12:22 pm - February 2, 2012
By: Jeremy Zoss
Jeremy Zoss

Recent changes in city and state ordinances have made craft beer one of the most rapidly growing industries around, and a new event in April will celebrate the latest batch of upstart brewers. Spring Ale Fest will be held on April 7th at The Ritz Theater and will highlight 10 young brewing companies from Minnesota (and Wisconsin).

“We’re all big fans of local beer, but the big guys like Surly don’t need marketing,” said Spring Ale Fest co-founder Conner O’Meara. “This is a platform for small brewers to introduce themselves to the public.”

O’Meara and co-founders Bryan Dallman and Kate Heilman conceived of a small, all-local craft beer fest after attending a meeting of the West Bank Brewing Association. They found a home for the festival at The Ritz and started approaching brewers. Before long, eight had committed to the festival: Barley John’s Brew Pub, Brau Brothers, Dangerous Man, Flat Earth, Harriet, Lucette, Lucid and Staples Mill. They expect to add two more brewers to the list soon.

“This is a boom time for beer,” said Dallman.

Tickets are $30 in advance, $40 at the door. The organizers expect to have more than 30 beers at the festival and presentations by the brewers. All attendees will receive a souvenir glass, and the festival will also feature live music, prize raffles and food trucks. For more information and tickets, visit springalefest.com