Got Beer? Summer + Beer = Bliss!

It’s finally warming up (according to the 10-day forecast we consulted at weather.com whilst typing these words), so it’s time to fill up your summer schedule with the season’s beer-soaked happenings.

Let’s get festive! On Saturday, June 9 (close-enough-to-summer) from noon to 3pm, the folks who launched the DecemBeer Fest in ’17 will stage the debut BeerBQfest at Twelve Acres in Smithfield. They’re lining up more than 100 beers from three dozen New England beerists, plus heaps of RI ’Q. Go to eventbrite.com for tix.

On Sunday, June 10 (almost summer) from 2 to 5pm, the Beervana team and the RI Food Fights crew will present the 2nd Annual Bacon & Beer Fest at the Steel Yard (27 Sims Ave, PVD). You can sip and savor more than two dozen bacon-centric creations by local kitchen magicians paired with spot-on local, national and international beers. The complete list of breweries and cheweries is on the fest’s Eventbrite page (tix were still available at presstime).

On Saturday, July 21, head to Newport for the Craft Brew Races extravaganza at Fort Adams State Park. A 5K walk/run is followed by a three-hour brew fest, featuring more than three dozen breweries, including most of the 401 independent craft beer family. Get the details at craftbrewraces.com.

On Saturday, August 11, get a headstart on Oktoberfest (which kicks off in Munich on September 22 and runs through October 7) at Foolproof’s sixth annual Augtoberfest. Do some curls with weighty steins filled with the fest’s namesake Märzen (and many other styles) at the Pawtucket biergarten, and make merry with music, food and oompah-powered fun. Up-to-date info will be at foolproofbrewing.com.

beer picwebOn Saturday, August 25, Brew At the Zoo will draw the thirsty throngs to Roger Williams Park Zoo. The BATZ folks are promising more than 170 beers from 80-plus breweries, plus face time and conversation with their furry and feathered residents. Tix are on sale at rwpzoo.org.

And the fourth annual Ocean State Beer Fest will take place in September at a site TBA (Grey Sail, Foolproof and Whalers hosted the first three bashes). Most of the 401 breweries will participate and will unleash a “festival-only” beer for your sampling pleasure. The where and when will be posted at ribrewersguild.org down the road apiece.

The past three summers saw the Food Truck & Craft Beer Festival pulling into India Point Park; the FT&CBF is skipping PVD this year, but if you want to take a few mini-road trips (’tis the season for hitting the road), you can enjoy the local flavor at the Seacoast Fest in Somersworth, NH, on June 17; in the Berkshires at the Great Barrington, Mass, fairgrounds on June 30; and at the Cape Cod Fairgrounds in Falmouth, Mass, on August 11. Click foodtruckfestivalsofamerica.com for specifics.

And make your own “fest” by visiting all of the 401 breweries throughout the warm months. Kick off your quest with a visit to the newest beer kid on the block, Providence Brewing Company; proceed north and south and east and west in the following weeks to bask in the state’s bounty of beermakers; and end your joyful journey with the local craft beer pioneers at Newport Craft. During the summer, they’ll have expanded hours at their tasting room and pavilion (Sunday – Thursday Noon to 8 pm and Friday and Saturday Noon to 10pm) and will host the Sip & Sweat Summer Workout Series every Saturday at 11am; get the particulars at facebook.com/NewportCraft. (And check for updates re: the soon-to-be-newest 401 outpost, Beer On Earth [beeronearth.com] – they hope to open their doors in June in North Kingstown.) Cheers!

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