Shore Craft Beer Fest Next Weekend

OCEAN CITY — Ocean City officials last week proclaimed October as Shore Craft Beer Month just in time for the Shore Craft Beer Fest scheduled for Sunset Park later this month.

With the proliferation of local breweries in recent years, it was only a matter of time before most of them collaborated on a special event in Ocean City. The Shore Craft Beer Fest on Oct. 24 will help promote the resort area as a growing destination for craft beer enthusiasts. Event organizer Anne Hillyer, who is coordinating the craft brew fest at Sunset Park with the Ocean City Development Corporation (OCDC), was on hand last Monday when Mayor Rick Meehan read the proclamation claiming October as Shore Craft Beer Month in the resort. Also on hand were representatives from Ocean City’s three in-town breweries — Backshore Brewing Company, the Assawoman Bay Brewing Company and the Ocean City Brewing Company.

“Craft beer here is worth celebrating,” she said. “We have three now in Ocean City and a bunch more within a half-an-hour drive. This is going to be an outrageous event. It will be the first time at a beer fest you can take their product home with you.”

The event is slated for Saturday, Oct. 24 with a rain date of Sunday, Oct. 25. There will be nine breweries represented, some of which are in Ocean City and other that are within 30 minutes of the resort. Each of the participating breweries will bring two samples of their craft brews for the participants to try.

Each brewery will have representatives on hand pouring their own beer and providing participants with additional information about the various craft brews. In addition, each brewery will have a table to display promotional materials about their operations and directions for participants to find them after the event in Ocean City.

In a slight departure from other special events, the Shore Craft Brew Fest in October will include one or more food trucks to supply participants with something to eat while they are sampling the various craft beers. Ocean City has resisted food trucks, largely in deference to existing brick and mortar businesses, but in this case, it was deemed appropriate to have one or more food trucks for an event of this type.

The event will run from 12:30-4:30 p.m.. The first hour from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. will be reserved for VIPs, while the beer festival will be open to the general public from 1:30-4:30 p.m. The cost for VIPs is $40, while the general admission is $25 in advance or $35 at the door.