Festivals exercise various levels of caution
There are five fresh hop festivals happening in Pacific Northwest over the coming weeks. Probably more than that, but these are the biggest ones that should attract the largest crowds and offer the largest beer selections. Large crowds. It sounds a bit scary these days. I offer the following information so potential festivalgoers can make informed choices.
Each of the upcoming festivals has addressed the pandemic in its own way, recognizing the importance of health and safety while still forging ahead with the events. Tickets are still available for all five events.
So here’s the deal with each of these three upcoming events in terms of health and safety.
- Seattle Fresh Hop Beer Festival
- Washington Beer Fresh Hop Festival
- Yakima Fresh Hop Festival
- Hood River Hops Fest
- Portland Fresh Hops Festival
Seattle Fresh Hop Beer Festival
Saturday, October 9th (two sessions: afternoon and evening)
Magnuson Park, Hangar 30, Seattle
Another familiar location for local beer fans, the Seattle Fresh Hop Beer Festival takes place at Magnuson Park’s Hangar 30, which has hosted several other beer events over the years. Mostly, the annual Washington Winter Beer Fest. It’s large, very large, and has high ceilings. It’s a hangar at a former naval air station, after all.
There are ticket options. Not just two separate sessions, but an option to get you in the door early. This event features “75+ brews, games, entertainment and low flying tacos.”
From the organizers:
We ask that you not attend if any of the following is true for you or anyone in your party:
Within 14 days before attending the festival you have tested positive, or been exposed to someone who has tested positive for, COVID-19;
Within 48 hours prior to attending the festival, you have experienced symptoms of COVID-19 (e.g., a fever of 100.4F or higher, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, chills, repeated shaking muscle pain/achiness, headache, sore throat, loss of taste or smell, nasal congestion, runny nose, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue or any other symptoms associated with COVID-19 identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) that cannot be explained by a pre-existing condition;
Within 14 days prior to attending the festival, you have travelled to any international territory identified by federal or applicable state or local governments as being subject to travel or quarantine advisories due to COVID-19.
Washington Beer Fresh Hop Festival
Friday, October 8th, and Saturday, October 9th
Marymoor Park, Redmond, WA
Many local beer fanatics are accustomed to attending the big Washington Brewers Festival each spring at Marymoor Park. The Washington Beer Fresh Hop Festival is presented by the same folks: The Washington Beer Commission.
This event will actually take place at a slightly different location within the vastness of Marymoor Park, one that is more appropriate for the event size and potential weather conditions. Plus, the crowd sizes will be limited. More than 30 breweries will pour their best fresh hop brews alongside other select beers. Also, this is a 21+ event, both days.
From the organizers:
We are following all state and local health requirements and guidelines for large outdoor events. Our goal is to provide a safe event for all attendees, staff and volunteers by implementing the following protocols:
All guests, staff and volunteers inside the festival must be fully vaccinated for Covid-19. Proof of vaccination can include your vaccination card, a printed copy of your vaccination card, or photo of your vaccination card on your phone. The name on the vaccination card must match the name on your state issued identification (driver’s license) or U.S. Passport. Any guest not providing proof of vaccination will be denied entry.
Masks are required at all outdoor events exceeding 500 people per King County Order. Protective masks must be worn at all times when not drinking/eating. Masks must cover both nose and mouth.
Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival
Oct 2, 2021 from 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM
SOZO Sports Complex, Yakima, WA
One thing that remains the same is that dozens of breweries will pour beer at the Yakima Fresh Hop Ale Festival. Let’s face it, there’s something cool about drinking fresh hop beers so close to the source: Yakima.
This year they’ve moved the event to a large sports complex that provides a lot of outdoor space, room for social distancing, etc. They’ll offer a shuttle service between downtown and the venue.
They are offering refunds to anyone who bought tickets before the guidelines were announced.
From the event organizers:
All festival attendees, vendors, volunteers and contractors must present ONE of the following to gain admission to the festival grounds:
Negative Covid-19 Test within 72 hours of the festival (at home test not accepted)
Proof of full vaccination, which is defined as two weeks following the second dose of Pfizer or Modera vaccines, or two weeks following the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
In addition, all festival attendees, vendors, volunteers and contractors must:
Sign a Covid-19 Liability Waiver – Fill out this form prior to entering the festival gates stating that you do not have any symptoms of COVID-19 such as cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell.
Wear a Mask. Masks are required at all outdoor events attended by 500 people or more. Regardless of vaccination status, face coverings are required at all times except when physical distancing from others outside of one’s household is practiced or while in the act of eating or drinking.
Hood River Hops Fest
October 2, 2021 12:00 PM
Downtown Hood River
I like to say, “Hood River. It’s just barely Oregon.” On the other side of the Columbia, the town of Hood River hosts one of the region’s largest fresh hop beer fests every year. The Hood River Hops Fest features more than 30 breweries from around the PNW and an afternoon of live music.
From the organizers:
All ticket holders 12 and over are required to show proof of full COVID vaccination or a negative test for entry into the event. “Fully vaccinated” means that ticket holders have received their final vaccination dose of either the two-dose regimen of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or one dose of Johnson & Johnson. Acceptable forms of proof will be a printed, digital, or original copy of either a vaccine card or negative test results (test must have been taken within 72 hours prior to festival entry). Testing will be available on site, provided by Curative Health at no cost for those that wish to be tested prior to entry.
Portland Fresh Hops Festival
Fri, Oct 1 at 4pm – Sat, Oct 2 at 8pm
at Glendoveer Golf & Tennis Driving Range
Over 50 breweries are slated to pour at this year’s Portland Fresh Hops Festival. The Oregon Brewers Guild’s 17th Annual fresh hop event, previously took place at the Oaks Park Amusement Park, but this year movs to a new location: Glendoveer Golf & Tennis driving range.
From the organizers:
In light of the current situation, the Guild is taking added precautions to help ensure public health and safety is a top priority, including requiring proof of full vaccination for entry. The two-day event will be outdoors with plenty of room for social distancing and broken into three separate four-hour sessions. Pours will be offered in compostable, single-use cups with souvenir event glassware available for pick-up as you exit the event. Due to the current mandate, facemasks will be required for all attendees, volunteers, and staff except when actively eating or drinking.
For more beer-related events around Washington, check out the Washington Beer Blog’s events calendar.