Charlotte Craft Beer Week is back for its 10th year after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic. This year, it’ll be bigger and better than in years past, according to organizers Rachael Hudson of Pilot Brewing and Gavin Toth of Divine Barrel.
Celebrated during NC Beer Month, from October 21-30, CCBW will be filled with free events and activities, a job fair and new beer releases to celebrate the breweries in Mecklenburg and surrounding counties.
Why it matters: CCBW has the potential to bring a lot of outside revenue into the city. “Ultimately, the goal is to make Charlotte a destination for craft beer,” Toth said. “Because it is, I just don’t think the general public knows that.”
- Hudson says they expect thousands of locals to attend the different events hosted by the establishments in Charlotte and the surrounding area, with “light attendance from out-of-town beer lovers.” But they’re working with the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority to turn Charlotte Craft Beer Week into a tourism event, and increase the number of out-of-towners each year.
- Of note: The annual economic impact of North Carolina craft beer is nearly $3 billion, according to Gov. Roy Cooper.
How it works: Breweries, cideries, bottle shops, taprooms, craft beer restaurants and beer clubs are all invited to participate in the week of events. “Basically any off or on-site retailer that wants to,” Hudson said.
- “It can be overwhelming to plan 10 events in 10 days,” Hudson says. So, participants can choose to host events alone, together, or simply join in on the anchor events. CCBW will help promote all of the events on their social media.
- Businesses in Charlotte-Mecklenburg County and surrounding counties, including South Carolina.
Zoom out: Charlotte has a history of hosting brewery festivals, like Untappd and CLT Brewed Week, but Gavin and Hudson say what will set them apart will be the community focus and inclusivity that Charlotte Craft Beer Week was founded on.
The schedule: “Each day, or pair of days, will be themed with different event ideas,” Hudson explains. “Some days will be ‘low-key’ in which breweries are encouraged to plan their own event.” Other days will be anchor events organized by the planners, which everyone is invited to participate in.
- Saturday 10/22 and Sunday 10/23: Community weekend, where participating breweries are encouraged to plan their own event like a fundraiser for a charity, release a Brave Noise Beer, host a neighborhood clean-up, or run club.
- Monday 10/24 & Tuesday 10/25: Beer education and Beer & Food Days; participating breweries will plan their own educational event like hosting a beer-tapping class or beer pairing dinner.
- Wednesday 10/26: Job fair hosted by the event planners but open to everyone. This will be one of the anchor events hosted at Resident Culture Plaza Midwood with room for 20 vendors. Those who can’t attend in person can apply online through a job board the planners are organizing. “This is going to be a very inclusive job fair,” Hudson said, adding that it’s open to the public, and the vendors aren’t “just breweries, but anyone in the alcohol industry.”
- Thursday 10/27 & Friday 10/28: Collab release day, where breweries are encouraged to team up with each other to release a collaboration beer, or team up with any other establishment to do something similar.
- Friday 10/28: “Bad review night” is an anchor event hosted at Free Range Brewing, where brewers will take the stage to read bad reviews, similar to Jimmy Kimmel’s “bad tweets.”
- Saturday 10/29: The LoSo Halloween crawl will be an anchor event hosted by Gilde, Protagonist, Brewers at Yancy, Sugar Creek, Red Clay, Olde Mecklenburg Brewery and Lower Left.
- Saturday/Sunday 10/29-30: Entertainment weekend hosted by participating breweries, who are encouraged to host live music, an art show, comedy night, scavenger hunt, etc.
What’s next: If you’re a local business owner looking to participate head over to the Charlotte Craft Beer Week website to apply and learn more.
The post Calling all breweries: Charlotte Craft Beer Week is back appeared first on Axios Charlotte.