Celebration of beer returns for 22nd year

Beer lovers unite! The 22nd Brewers Rendezvous is approaching. An event that started as a membership meeting for the Colorado Brewers Guild quickly morphed into a full-fledged festival. In the first few years, less than 20 breweries attended, but now 70 breweries from all over the state max out Riverside Park. The event runs 1-5 p.m. Saturday, July 14.

In addition to the beer, there will be live music from Velvet Riff and The Swashbuckling Doctors, who are both sure to keep beer-lovers festive.

The event is a collaboration between the guild and the Salida Chamber of Commerce. It serves as a fundraiser for both nonprofits. Together the “dynamic team” aims to showcase the talent of Colorado craft brewers and host one of the “best parties in the state.”

New last year was a switch from the typical pint glasses to smaller tasting glasses. It meant the festival-goers were more in control when they exited the park.

Steve Kurowski, marketing director with the guild, said, “Over the past 22 years, the Rendezvous has remained one of the few festivals that is a not-miss for many brewery owners and the brewers themselves. It’s the one time of year everyone is in the same spot. A time to catch up and celebrate another year.”

One of the main differences between this beer festival and others is that, in most cases, the owners and brewers are the ones pouring the beers, which means beer aficionados can meet the brewers and ask them questions.

There will be more than 300 different beers to sample.

Lori Roberts, Salida Chamber of Commerce executive director, said they expect about 3,000 people to attend the event. New this year is the Brewers Rendezvous Pre-Vous. Held at 6 p.m. Friday, July 13, at the Salida SteamPlant Event Center, the Pre-Vous will feature 35 breweries offering exclusive samples. Appetizers will be served, and the event is limited to the first 150 people through the door. You must be 21 to attend.

Monarch Mountain is sponsor of the glasses and wristbands. Joyful Journey Hot Springs Spa is the VIP Sponsor, and American Overhead Door is the music sponsor. Montrose Water Factory is an in-kind sponsor, providing more than 280 gallons of water.

Advance general admission tickets are $45, while tickets at the gate will cost $55. There is also a VIP option for $110, which offers several perks including early entry into the park, private bathrooms and swag. There are a limited number of VIP tickets available. Designated driver tickets are $15, and children 12 and under will be admitted free.

Tickets can be purchased at the Salida Chamber, 406 W. U.S. Highway 50, or online at https://salidachamber.org/brewers-rendezvous-tickets/. Online tickets come with an additional processing fee.