Each September, local organizations team up to bring a one-of-a-kind event to Alaska’s capital city. Juneau’s Capital Brewfest takes place at the Juneau Arts and Cultural Center, just a five-minute walk from the Westmark Baranof Hotel. The event has grown year to year, and in 2015, Capital Brewfest planned its fourth annual event, establishing itself as one of the area’s favorite things to do in Juneau.
What Is Capital Brewfest
This Alaska brewfest is a fundraiser for local organizations – Juneau’s Rotary Club and an annual charitable partner organization – in 2015 it was United Way of Southeast Alaska. Capital Brewfest is a hot-ticket item, and it’s no surprise why: Alaskans love their beer, especially when it’s brewed with love by one of a number of local microbreweries around the state. The event hosts six Alaska brewing companies from Juneau, Sitka, Anchorage, Fairbanks, and Talkeetna as well a slew of local and foreign drafts from three different beer distributors. Expect to find some bottles of Samuel Smith draught beer from North Yorkshire’s oldest brewery and even a sampling of Trappist beer, brewed in an ancient process by Trappist-order monks in Belgium. Altogether, eight beer pods with more than 30 different beer selections will quench the thirst of about 400-500 lucky patrons. Tickets should be purchased in advance as they typically sell out to hundreds of lucky patrons, according to Capital Brewfest organizers.
In addition to Alaska microbrews, Brewfest attendees enjoy food from local food vendors and music performed by local rock, blues, and jazz bands. Discounted designated driver tickets are also available for anyone interested in partaking in just the music and dining festivities.
The History of Capital Brewfest
The idea for this celebration of all things beer originated separately, but simultaneously, by members of the Rotary and the Southeast Alaska Guidance Association, a local AmeriCorps chapter, without the one being aware of the other’s efforts. Juneau Rotary members Andy Mills and Cori Badgley both had previous experience with putting together beer festivals, having organized the California Brewers Festival in Sacramento, Calif., for several years. After learning the only Southeast Alaska brewfest takes place in Haines, they came up with the idea to create one in Juneau, a busier visitor destination than Haines. At the same time in another place, members of SAGA were working on a similar plan in order to raise funds for their programs that recently suffered severe federal budget cuts. Once word got out that both nonprofits were in the planning phase of the same type of event, they decided to join forces in what has now become a yearly charitable fundraising event. The Rotary Club heads Capital Brewfest annually in Juneau, partnering each year with a different beneficiary.
Capital Brewfest has become a yearly occurrence for Juneau, with the Rotary Club heading the effort and partnering each year with a different beneficiary.
Visit the Capital Brewfest homepage to get all the information on brewers, sponsors and bands that will be attending.