Downtown to see brew fest

Fort Payne will see its first brew festival downtown next month. On Oct. 12, Fort Payne Main Street and Alabama Beer Promotions will host the Mountain Town Hop Fest at the Rotary Pavilion from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Justin Quarles and Matt Roeder, co-founders of Alabama Beer Promotions, said the company will feature a variety of Alabama, Tennessee and Georgia beers and hard ciders. The event will also see live music and local food.

According to https://bama.beer, Alabama Beer Promotions is an Albertville-based company that has a “passion” for craft beer and helping breweries get their products out to communities by hosting events like the upcoming Hop Fest.

Roeder said one of the goals of the event is not only to bring people to try the large variety of brews that will be available, but to also bring residents and visitors to downtown Fort Payne to shop and eat. An event like the Hop Fest can also help attract possible breweries to come to communities, as well, he said.

“We hope people will come eat lunch, come to the brew fest and then stay in Fort Payne for dinner,” he said.

Roeder said events like the Hop Fest can sometimes be misconstrued, but this event is not a “drunk fest.” It will be a “nice” adult activity downtown that will also offer an area to buy cigars and food, he said.

There will be approximately 30 to 40 breweries represented and two food vendors. Roadside ‘Que will be onsite with Bavarian pretzels with spicy mustard and beer cheese, pork sandwiches, Bratwursts and pretzel necklaces. Po’ Man Grill, of Opelika, Alabama, will also be there giving demonstrations of their product.

Live music from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. will be singer, songwriter and guitarist Cheryl Llewellyn, of Athens, who plays blues, rock, alternative and soul. The Barefoot Blues Band will also play a combination of rock and blues from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Since the event is on a Saturday, both event organizers also said large screens will be set up to play football games throughout the event.

The reception from businesses, organizations and the city of Fort Payne has been “essential,” and the community has welcomed them and the event with full support, Roeder said.

“We couldn’t be happier with the response so far,” he said. “We want to get the word out and get 500 people here in October.”

So far, the company has received multiple sponsorships and has closed the Gold and Platinum slots for the event; however, the Silver Sponsorship package, which includes two tickets, signage at the event and social media advertising that reaches more than 2,500 followers and the Bronze Sponsorship package that includes one ticket and the social media advertising are both still available. The deadline to become a sponsor is Oct. 3.

They are also looking for local people interested in volunteering for the event. Volunteers would be assigned to a certain brewery table and would primarily pour beer. An after party will also be held for the Platinum and Gold sponsors and volunteers. If anyone is interested in becoming a sponsor or volunteer, send your contact information to bamabeerpromos.gmail.com.

For participants, tickets are $30 in advance and $40 the day of the event and a portion of all ticket sales will go to “A Soldier’s Journey Home,” a group of volunteers primarily comprised of current and retired firefighters and retired veterans that build homes specially adapted for a soldier with disabilities.

For more information on Alabama Beer Promotions and the Mountain Town Hop Fest, visit https://bama.beer or follow the event page on Facebook at @mthopfest for regular updates.

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