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Record Number of Craft Brewers Gather to Mock Winter at February 27 Winter Beer Festival at Fifth Third Ballpark in GR

Chill Out at 2010 Michigan Winter Beer Festival

Record Number of Craft Brewers Gather to Mock Winter
at February 27 Outdoor Festival at Fifth Third Ballpark

* * * Tickets Selling Fast – Sell Out Expected Once Again * * *

Attendees at the 2010 Michigan Winter Beer Festival will find more craft brewers than ever before – with about 50 signed up to showcase 300-plus craft beers from around the state. Sponsored by the Michigan Brewers Guild (MBG), the fifth annual event runs from Noon to 5pm on Saturday, February 27, at Fifth Third Ballpark in Comstock Park, just north of downtown Grand Rapids.

Tickets for the Michigan Winter Beer festival – which include admission and 15 tasting tokens – are $35 each in advance and are available online at www.michiganbrewersguild.org, at the Fifth Third Ballpark box office and at participating Guild member breweries and select retail outlets (see the MASH for outlets). The event undoubtedly will sell out, as it did the past two years. If any tickets remain, they will be available at the gate the day of, for $40 each.

“We still expect to sell out this year, even with a 25% increase in available tickets,” says Scott Graham, Executive Director of the Michigan Brewers Guild. “Advanced ticket sales are tracking way ahead of last year already. That says a lot about our reputation for providing a quality entertainment option for Michigan craft beer lovers.”

MBG Enthusiast Members are admitted at 11am, one hour before the general public. Enthusiast membership is $25 per year and may be purchased online at www.michiganbrewersguild.org/beernut.asp. Benefits include discounts at participating membership brewpubs, a free t-shirt proclaiming your Michigan Beer Nuttiness and VIP status at our various festivals with early admission.

“We’re excited to be back in Grand Rapids for our winter celebration,” Graham says. “This year, we’re again setting up in the right field parking lot with a series of tents, an entertainment stage, a food tent and a bonfire to help keep everyone warm – weather permitting.”

Special entertainment for the 2010 Winter Festival includes the Chicago-style blues band Hank Mowery and the Hawktones (www.hawktones.com), who will take to the stage first, followed by the rock / soul / funk sounds of Four Finger Five (www.myspace.com/fourfingerfive)

The Festival will be held in the outfield parking lot at the ballpark, as it was last year, and breweries will be located within several large tents. The tents, combined with body heat will help take the edge off the temperature. Keep in mind, this is an outdoor event and that you should dress accordingly. Hats, mittens, boots and long-johns are recommended to keep you warm. We are planning to have a central bonfire, but only if the weather cooperates with low wind conditions.

It would be helpful if everyone could hoist a Michigan beer and do a fair weather dance. We are hoping for good weather for a late February day in Michigan, but the Festival will take place snow, rain or shine.

Michigan’s thriving brewing industry contributes over $24 million in wages with a total economic contribution of more than $133 million. In terms of overall number or breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs, Michigan ranks #6 in the nation – thus supporting its claim as “The Great Beer State.”

The Michigan Brewers Guild exists to unify the Michigan brewing community; to increase sales of Michigan-brewed beer through promotions, marketing, public awareness and consumer education; and to monitor and assure a healthy beer industry within the state. For more information, including a list of Michigan microbreweries and brewpubs, log on to www.michiganbrewersguild.org.

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