The 9th Annual Atlantic Beer Festival, Atlantic Canada’s longest-running beer fest, will be held this year on Saturday, May 31st. Taking place at the Moncton Coliseum, there will be two sessions: one in the afternoon from 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm, and an evening session from 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm. Tickets are $49 each (tax included), and can be purchased directly at the Pump House Brewery or the Moncton Coliseum, and online at tickets.moncton.ca. Note that evening session tickets are sold out through the Coliseum, but a few more have been released and are available at the Pump House only.
For this year’s event, a limited number of 24 VIP tickets were made available through the Moncton Beer League, in conjunction with the festival. These $65 tickets, which are now sold out, include pre-fest snacks at the Pump House, followed by a limousine ride to the festival, where ticket-holders will be allowed to skip the line via a VIP entrance; a limo ride back to the Pump House after the fest is also included. All proceeds from these tickets will be donated to a local charity. As well, a team of volunteers from another local charity will be present to assist in pouring beer samples; a donation from the Atlantic Beer Festival will be made on their behalf.
Sponsored by the ANBL and City of Moncton, this year’s festival will offer their largest selection of beer yet, with over 160 beers from more than 35 breweries/importers. While the full brewery/beer list has not been released yet (look for that to be posted May 24th), we have confirmation on a few of the breweries that will be attending, including several from Quebec (Microbrasserie Charlevoix, Le Naufrageur, and returning favorite Le Trou du Diable, with a whopping 10 different beers!), Muskoka Brewery from Ontario, and, of course, some Atlantic Canadian breweries such as Pump House and The PEI Brewing Co. Attendees can also look forward to sampling 10-12 different brands from American breweries (such as Wachusett Brewing Company and Cisco Brewers, just to mention a couple), thanks to the participation of an importer from Massachusetts. That’s a lot of beer to sample that we can’t normally get in our area! Most breweries will have representatives on hand to answer questions about their beers.
In addition to all that beer, there will be several food options. Like last year, a BBQ/smoking station will be set up to provide pretzels, sausages, and pulled pork sandwiches for sale. As well, the St. James’ Gate will have a food booth at the festival. Water and Pepsi products will also be available for no extra charge. Live entertainment will be present throughout the festival; both Carey Beck and the 60 LPs will be performing at both the afternoon and evening sessions.
This year, the Atlantic Beer Festival and ANBL are providing free transportation in the form of buses after each session; patrons will be able to travel to various locations in the Greater Moncton Area. As they’ve made clear, this is more of a quality over quantity type of event, and they wish to ensure that safety is the number one priority for everyone involved.
The festival is approaching fast, so if you haven’t bought your ticket yet, don’t wait much longer! There’s still plenty of afternoon tickets available… keep in mind that at least one beer will be making an appearance solely at this session (no, we don’t know which one(s), yet!); with the slightly more-relaxed atmosphere, it’s a great option. We’ll be having a contest on Twitter and Facebook to give away 2 afternoon session tickets… tune in to our Friday Wrap-Up tomorrow for more details!
Update May 16: We’re giving away two tickets for the afternoon session (2:30 – 5:00 pm)! Hop on Twitter and send us a note that you’d like to win the tickets (something like: Hey @ACBeerBlogger! I want to win tickets to #ABF2014! http://wp.me/p23UN6-1gZ). One entry per person; we’ll randomly pick the winner before 11:59PM Thursday, May 22nd, and announce their name in next Friday’s post. Good luck!