When the weather is wet and windy it’s the perfect time to go inside and drink delicious craft beer.

Craft beer enthusiasts on the Sunshine Coast did just that on Saturday, November 12, when a crowd of local residents, as well as visitors from Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland, gathered for the 2016 Powell River Craft Beer Festival.

Glasses waiting for festival goers.
Glasses waiting for festival goers.

The Powell River Craft Beer Festival is organized by the local chapter of CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ales) and its president Paddy Treavor. While the main event was the festival itself on Saturday afternoon, the beer festivities began on Friday evening with a tap takeover at Coastal Cookery. The popular Powell River restaurant, which regularly showcases Townsite Brewing’s beers, also featured offerings from Vancouver’s Brassneck Brewery and Parallel 49 Brewing, along with Cumberland Brewing, Four Winds Brewing from Delta, and Courtenay’s Gladstone Brewing Company.

Paddy Trevor (CAMRA Powell River President) with his wife Blanka and daughter Cielo
Paddy Treavor (CAMRA Powell River President) with his wife Blanca and daughter Cielo.

The beer festival, which  sold out several days ahead of time, was an opportunity to sample beer from those breweries mentioned above, along with Persephone Brewing, Forbidden Brewing, Parkside Brewery, Dageraad Brewing, Driftwood Brewery, Riot Brewing and White Sails Brewing. For any non-beer drinkers, or those just looking for some variety in their beverage sampling, there was also cider from Vancouver Island’s Merridale Cider & Distillery and spirits from Long Table Distillery in Vancouver. Real Cask Ales was also on site pouring a stout and the Powell River Homebrewing Club was on site pouring some of the beers they’d been creating.

Scott Martin and Cedric Dauchot of Townsite Brewing
Scott Martin and Cedric Dauchot of Townsite Brewing

With so much to sample, it was hard for anyone to pick a favourite–whether you preferred a dark beer like Driftwood’s Blackstone Porter, something hoppy like Cumberland’s IPA or a lager like the Dawn Pilsner from Parkside, there was something for everyone.

For those who have attended larger scale beer events in Vancouver or Victoria, this one may have seemed small, but David Schneider of Persephone Brewing in Gibsons said craft beer events like the Powell River Craft Beer Festival and the Sunshine Coast Craft Beer Festival, which will be held in February, are opportunities to be able to really sample a selection of great beers and mingle with other beer lovers without being overwhelmed by a long list of breweries and huge line-ups.

The Sunshine Coast Craft Beer Festival will be announcing ticket details along with the list of participating breweries in the coming months.

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