Heres a summer outing for grown-ups who love their brew: Beer Camp Across America.
In celebration of opening its new sister brewery on the opposite coast, Chicos Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. orchestrated what it hopes to be Americas largest celebration of craft beer in history. This party spans the nation with seven separate festivals. First stop: Sierra Nevadas own Hop Field on July 19.
Were about to open a second brewery in North Carolina, and while thats exciting for us, its an even greater reason to celebrate the future of craft brewers everywhere, said Sierra Nevada founder Ken Grossman. Weve watched and learned from each other for decades, and together weve seen tastes change and crafts momentum snowball. Beer Camp Across America is our way of reflecting on thiswith thousands of brewers, fans and great beers. It should be pretty fun.
Grossman invited more than 2,700 craft brewers to take part nationwide. For the inaugural camp day, 108 breweries from Northern California, Idaho, Northern Nevada, Oregon and Washington will pour more than 200 different beers. Participating beer makers are limited to two brews apiece. A special edition 12-pack will be available to take home, too.
Among the Sacramento-area craft brewing companies taking part are Bike Dog, Berryessa, Common Cider, Goathouse, Jackrabbit, Knee Deep, Mraz, New Glory, New Helvetia, Ol Republic, Out of Bounds, Rubicon, Ruhstaller, Sudwerk and Sutter Buttes.
Of course, youll need some food with all that beer. The Chico camp boasts 17 food carts and trucks: Annies Asian, Black Kettle, Cafe2U, Caribbean Cafe, Cocos Baking Company, Cupcake Crusader, Ethels Sweets, Gordo Burrito, Grub Station, The Hunter & The Farmer, Ikes Smokehouse, Indays Filipino Food, Mayhem Gourmet Grilled Cheese, Pops Pizza, Tamale Tango, Truckaroni and Wander.
Admission is $65 including a commemorative glass and unlimited beer tastings; food is extra. Designated drivers can get in for $30. Its adults only; no one under age 21 will be admitted. A portion of proceeds will go to support craft beer makers and beer research.
After its July 19 kickoff, Beer Camp continues with stops at Denver (July 25), Chicago (July 27), Portland, ME. (Aug. 1), Philadelphia (Aug. 2) and the new Sierra Nevada facility at Mills River, N.C. (Aug. 3). Find out the full details (including all the participating breweries) at www.SierraNevada.com/BeerCamp.
Call The Bees Debbie Arrington, (916) 321-1075. Follow her on Twitter @debarrington.