(Editor's Note: The Roanoker Magazine is a proud sponsor for this year's Microfestivus event. We can't wait to see everyone there!)
Microfestivus – this year’s event is August 10 at Elmwood Park – is both a great event and serious proof that an appreciation for beer is not new to Roanoke; the 2013 festival is the 16th annual, and is expected to break previous attendance records. And the beers are getting better, too.
“It’s the largest craft beer festival in Virginia,” says Aden Short of P.A. Short Distributing. “It’s changed over the years from big domestic to over 60 breweries represented. There were 12,000 people in attendance last year, and 15,000 are expected this year.”
The 2013 beer line-up was to be announced after this magazine went to press, but a peek at 2012 breweries gives a hint of great tastes to come. National craft brewery favorites included Lagunitas, Sierra Nevada, Victory, Rogue, and Laughing Dog. Virginia breweries included Lost Rhino, Starr Hill, Wild Wolf and Blue Mountain, plus locals Roanoke Railhouse, Big Daddy’s, and Radford’s The River Company.
After the 2012 festival, local beer blogger Jeff Dean reported at thebeerroad.com: “Moderate temperatures, plenty of sunshine, and a lot of great beer – the fifteenth edition of Roanoke’s Microfestivus craft beer festival flew by in what seemed like just a couple hours.” Dean noted the special cask ales, or firkins, that were available, plus two popular Southern Tier beers, Crème Brulee stout and Pumking pumpkin ale.
Microfestivus runs from noon to 6 p.m. In addition to 100+ beers, there will be food vendors and live music.
Mike Killelea of the Virginia Craft Brewers Guild appreciates Microfestivus from the brewers’ point of view. “It’s fantastic,” he raves, “a lot of fun. It’s a favorite event for brewers.”
And if the brewers are happy, the feeling is sure to spill over to the attendees.
microfestivus.squaresociety.org –Annie Tobey